To the Metropolitan State community:
I hope that each of you had a restful Thanksgiving break and that you are re-energized to engage the remainder of our fall semester.
I am writing to inform you that two incidents of harassment based on race and religion have been reported on our Dayton’s Bluff campus in the last week. These actions, including graffiti and verbal confrontation, were not only uncivil but needlessly aggressive. I am relieved to report that no person was physically hurt.
As I mentioned in a recent message, individuals across our nation are experiencing a range of heightened sensitivities at this time. While these feelings and reactions are deeply felt across the political spectrum, expressing them appropriately is a responsibility that rests upon every member of our university community.
Our University’s statement of values—“excellence; engagement; diversity; inclusion; an open, respectful climate; and integrity”—calls upon all of us to foster respectful interchanges and to learn from one another. In accordance with these shared University values we can reach out to each other with kindness and a genuine interest in understanding differing viewpoints. We can renew our university’s vision of fostering an anti-racist society. We can protect and defend our basic human freedoms of speech, belief, and assembly.
What we cannot do is tolerate physical or verbal violence, or any hostile actions against others, especially when based on religion, race, nationality, ethnicity, sexual orientation, political opinion, or any other personal characteristics. University Policy #1010 makes it clear that we uphold these values and will take appropriate action against those who violate them.
Community members who experience or witness discriminatory actions should notify Chief Diversity Officer Craig Morris, 651-793-1272.
I send you best wishes for a successful end to your semester.
President Virginia "Ginny" Arthur
Metropolitan State University