Advancing DEI: Preliminary Response to the Advisory Council's Proposals

Dear Members of the Hamilton Community,

Earlier this week the Advisory Council submitted its final proposals for addressing diversity, equity, and inclusion at Hamilton. I am grateful to the council members for the many hours they invested in this important work for the College and its future. Their proposals are thoughtful and far-reaching.

The proposals call for action by all members of the Hamilton community, including faculty, students, staff, the administration, the board of trustees, and alumni. I have already begun to discuss the final proposals with senior staff, and we have set aside time in future meetings to continue those discussions. I recognize that not everyone supported the process leading to the Advisory Council’s recommendations, but I hope all members of our community will consider how they can continue to contribute to the College’s ongoing DEI work.

At some point in the next few weeks, I will write again with a detailed response to the Advisory Council’s proposals. For the moment, I will just say that I share the council’s belief that we have an obligation to enact the structural changes that will make Hamilton a more inclusive and welcoming community for all its members, and I look forward to working with all of you to make that happen.

We are reminded of the importance of this work on a daily basis. As I write this, jury selection continues in the trial of Derek Chauvin for the murder of George Floyd, one of many recent instances of racialized police violence. Yesterday I wrote about escalating attacks against Asian Americans. Even a cursory look at the news on any given day highlights the continuing suffering caused by systemic racism and inequality.

There is, of course, a limit to what we at Hamilton can do to address these broader societal challenges, but we have an obligation to do what we can and to make Hamilton a community where bigotry of any kind has no place.


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