Dear Rutgers Alumni:
The events of recent weeks—most especially the chilling death of George Floyd at the hands of police officers in Minneapolis on Memorial Day—have been horrifying. The pain that African Americans have suffered in our nation for centuries was relived in a callous and dehumanizing act of violence that has now led to passionate protests in cities across the country. Mr. Floyd’s brutal death was deeply disturbing—even more so because it exposed the continued deep divide between the way most white Americans live and the way that all too many people of color are treated every day.
As graduates of Rutgers, you know that your alma mater has a longstanding commitment to social justice, and many of you, our alumni, have devoted yourselves to effecting change that replaces systemic racism with real opportunity for everyone—in education, health care, the legal system, housing, and other critical areas. I know I have witnessed that commitment on our campuses every day of my eight years as president.
So much more needs to be done to create the society that truly reflects our values as a university, but I believe Rutgers can play a part—and I know it will continue to do so under the leadership of our incoming president, Jonathan Holloway, and our fine chancellors at Newark, New Brunswick, Camden, and RBHS. I wanted to share with you the letters that our chancellors have sent to their individual community members.
Our thoughts are with you during these difficult times.