Open letter to the Albright community – Oct. 29, 2018
Dear Fellow Albrightians,
Our country and our world are experiencing ever-increasing turmoil — almost daily events which take a toll. Over this past week, we have read about pipe bombs being sent to journalists and politicians, a shooting of two African Americans in Kentucky, a government that is exploring removing recognition of and protection for transgender and gender non-binary individuals, and, over the weekend, a mass shooting in a synagogue in Pittsburgh. Each of these events represents the expression of hatred against persons who are different and each event raises significant and different emotions in each of us — fear, sadness, anger, indignation, and more.
I write today to remind the Albright community of our commitment to truth and justice — that our pursuit of human knowledge cannot be separated from our search for wise and just solutions in human affairs and in the stewardship of the natural world. These words, Veritas et Justitia, captured on the Albright seal, means we honor, nurture, and celebrate human diversity in all its forms and call into question whatever negates or endangers the dignity and worth of the human spirit. Hatred and violence have no place within the Albright community and cannot and will not be tolerated.
Each of us is different. Sometimes those differences are visible; often they are not — differences in race, religion, gender, sexual identity, ability, hometown or country, and political affiliation are only but a few of the differences that make us fully human. It is our responsibility to honor and appreciate those differences. I encourage us always, but especially during these times, to treat each other with kindness and empathy, to appreciate the differences that represent and express our humanity, to intentionally and actively work to understand, respect and meaningfully engage with members of our community with different life experiences and perspectives.
These are incredibly challenging times. Nothing is more important than the health, safety and emotional well-being of every member of our community. Albright’s many offices — Student and Campus Life, Academic Affairs, Human Resources, and the Counseling Center — provide resources and support to those who need it. Please take care of yourselves and one another.
Jacquelyn S. Fetrow, Ph.D., ’82
President and Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry