To DeVry University and Keller Graduate School community,
This is both a heartbreaking and frightening time in our country. During the past 10 days, we have witnessed the killing of George Floyd, and the peaceful protests and violent demonstrations that followed. While I cannot fathom the pain the black community has endured, I can tell you these horrific events call for DeVry University to stand with the black community and against systemic racism that still permeates our country. Now, more than ever, we need to come together to end the pervasive nature and impact of racism and social injustice, and move towards solutions.
This is a pivotal moment in time. As an institution of higher learning, it is incumbent upon DeVry to provide an environment that embraces diversity, equity and inclusion, where all students, faculty and staff are respected and feel accepted for who they are, no matter their race. It is also our responsibility to be engaged actively in the dialogue on the treatment of black Americans, race relations and social justice.
This past week has been a time of internal reflection for our faculty and staff. DeVry University went dark for a period of time this week so that our faculty and staff could purposely stop and reflect on what is happening in our world – what this means for them and how they, as an individual, a colleague or faculty member, a neighbor, a member of their community, can make a difference. With the support of DeVry’s Diversity & Inclusion Council, DeVry is committed to leading and encouraging dialogue among our faculty and staff, and with our students on how to create a better, safer and more inclusive tomorrow.
We know many within our community are hurting. We believe the best thing DeVry can do for our black students, faculty and staff right now is to be there for them and provide the flexibility they need. The university is poised to listen, engage in dialogue and demonstrate care for where they are in this moment, and learn how DeVry University can do even more to support our diverse community. At the same time, DeVry and its Diversity & Inclusion Council are focused on developing robust plans to help foster this dialogue and the University to do and be better longer term. In the coming weeks, DeVry’s Inclusion & Diversity Council will be broadening that dialogue to include the voices of our students and alumni.
I’m proud to lead an organization that places a high priority on diversity and inclusion as part of our culture of Care, and thank the DeVry Diversity & Inclusion Council for their leadership and partnership in these efforts. DeVry University pledges to be an active participant in conversations on equity and race, redouble our commitment to embrace and thrive on the diversity of our colleagues and students, and work stridently to end the racism that so profoundly impacts our black community every day.
I am and continue to be #DeVryProud,
Interim President & CEO