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University leaders reaffirm commitment to inclusion


The following message was sent by President M. Duane Nellis, Interim Executive Vice President and Provost David Descutner and Vice President for Student Affairs and Interim Chief Diversity Officer Jason Pina to the OHIO community on Friday, Aug. 18, 2017. 

Dear OHIO Community,
 
We join the nation and the world in condemning the violence that occurred last weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia, and send our thoughts to the grieving families whose loved ones lost their life or were injured. The events and the offensive comments that have followed serve as stark reminders that the history of discrimination, racism, bigotry, homophobia, and sexism remain threats to our diverse society. This is not the time to divide but to come together to reaffirm our commitment to our values as an inclusive community.

As we begin our return to campus it is important that we remain steadfast in committing to our values of community, inclusion, civil discourse, and free speech. These are the very tenets that not only speak to the founding of our country but to our own institution. While these events are distressing, we have faith in humanity and in each and every one of you.  And though hatred and bigotry are evils that we are forced to face in our lives, we firmly hold the belief that these are not ideals held by Bobcats. 
 
The value of education is to understand, explore, and study the very events that have shaped our country – both good and bad. We must take solace in the power of education to guide us in these challenging times. We take to heart the inscription on our Alumni Gate, “So enter that daily thou mayest grow in knowledge, wisdom and love.”
 
It is with this commitment that we will navigate these complex times together and prepare our students to go out into the world to improve it beyond this tenuous time when our morality is being put to the test. We will achieve this vision together.  

Sincerely, 

M. Duane Nellis
President 

David Descutner 
Interim Executive Vice President and Provost

Jason Pina
Vice President for Student Affairs and 
Interim Chief Diversity Officer