The recent increase of violence toward the Asian community has created an unmistakable heaviness felt around Atlanta, Georgia, the nation, and throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. We would like to add our support to President Christopher Callahan’s statement addressing the attacks on Asians, Asian Americans, and Pacific Islanders, released on Friday, March 19, 2021. Here at the Dugoni School, we also denounce any violence and all acts and expressions of racism toward the AAPI community. To our AAPI students, faculty, staff, alumni, patients, and friends, I stand with you and am here to support you in every way possible.
As the Dugoni School Family, I ask that you stand with me in solidarity alongside our Asian, Asian-American, and Pacific Islander communities against the ongoing acts of hate, bias, and racism.
Today, and every day, we affirm our commitment to continue our work toward a safer and more humanistic educational environment. We understand that at the root of these violent acts is a system that must be reimagined and built to lift everyone up, which can be accomplished by continuing conversations about ignorance and intolerance while we continue to build each other up. In collaboration with University President Callahan; Dr. Mary J. Wardell-Ghirarduzzi, incoming Vice President for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion; and diversity committees, we are committed to expanding our curriculum, educational programming and other opportunities that support diversity, equity, and inclusion within our four walls and within the community. However, we cannot do this without each of you.
I hope that together, we can establish Access, Belonging, and Compassion as the ABCs of our next normal in oral health education and society.
The Office of Student Services is coordinating a round table discussion for our San Francisco Campus, which will be a safe space for support, conversation, and reflection. Please be on the lookout for more information. In the meantime, I urge you to check in with your classmates, students, colleagues, patients, and loved ones.
I will end this statement of support with a quote by social activist, Grace Lee Boggs:
“I’ve come to believe that you cannot change any society unless you take responsibility for it, unless you see yourself as belonging to it and responsible for changing it.”
Be well and stay safe,