Thank you to the students who organized the Black Out event on Rydex yesterday. We are proud of our community—students, faculty, and staff—for wearing black and showing up in support. Thank you also to the students who spoke so poignantly about your experiences.
Clearly, we have work to do throughout our campus. The Cabinet is working to respond to many of the specific concerns that have been raised and looks forward to working with each of you to create a better Spring Hill community. Our new president, Dr. Mary Van Brunt is actively involved and has been in constant communication with the leadership team.
In September, we established a faculty and staff committee that we call the Justice League. The charge of the Justice League is to increase our campus-wide call to justice and cultivate meaningful action in our communities in support of our shared mission, Jesuit heritage, and institutional history as a force for good in the world.
In response to the racial hatred our community suffered on Wednesday, as well as the many stories of injustice we’ve heard before and since, the Justice League is working to establish initial programming in support of our shared goal of racial justice. These are first steps and not the whole plan by any means. The Justice League will continue to seek student input as we keep racial justice at the forefront of the campus conversation. Additionally, the Cabinet has received an initial list of action steps from students and plans to provide a clear response to these items by Friday of next week.
Here are some immediate actions we are taking in response to calls for dialog and education:
Cultural competency training for all undergraduate students, faculty, staff, and Cabinet members in January.
Monthly Common Hour Conversations in the dining hall. The first will take place on Tuesday, November 15 from 12:30 to 1:30pm as part of Justice and Service Week. All faculty, staff, and students are welcome to join in the conversation.
A parallel student Justice League. This group is in addition to the Black Student Union, which is nearing completion of the student group organization process.
Faculty-led discussions on racial justice issues. We have already heard from several faculty interested in volunteering their time and research.
We encourage anyone who has experienced a racial issue, bias incident, or aggression to submit to Spring Hill College’s Community Concerns page.
We’ve heard from many who are worried all of this will be swept under the rug. We want you to know that we, the Justice League and the Cabinet, will not let that happen. This has been a watershed moment for Spring Hill College, and we are going to use this momentum for the betterment of our community. We welcome your input and invite you to join us!
Rebecca Cantor, Provost
Kevin Abel, VP of Student Affairs
The Justice League and the Cabinet