Dear Bentley Community,
With warmer weather arriving and our commencement celebration coming later this week, I am saddened to be reaching out with anything but messages of celebration. But the events of this past weekend necessitate the harshest of rebukes and a firm echoing of our shared belief that there is simply no place for hatred and violence, especially when prompted by racist motivations, in our community or in our country.
The unimaginable grief that has been brought upon Buffalo and specifically the Black community there is deeply painful. And it is even more discouraging to know that this incident of hatred and violence is not an isolated one. Over the weekend we also learned of a shooting at a church in Laguna Woods, California, and another in downtown Milwaukee — sobering additions to the already alarming list of more than 200 mass shootings that have taken place in our country so far this year.
No words can heal the suffering caused by these tragic acts. But hatred, racism and violence must not be allowed to occur unnoticed and unanswered. I know we all share in a collective grief for the 10 lives lost. As a community, we stand together to condemn this despicable attack. And we must recommit to one another an understanding of and an appreciation for our differences and that as a community and a nation, we are better as a result. While tragedies like the one in Buffalo may seem far away, it is a reminder that each of us has the choice to how we define – and live – our shared humanity.
This should be a week of joy for our community as we prepare to celebrate our seniors at commencement. Instead, I know that for many and especially for our Black students, faculty, staff and alumni, it will be difficult to ignore this tragedy that is now dominating the news. Please know that our entire community stands with those who may be struggling to make sense of this senseless act. Students seeking support can contact our Counseling Center by calling 781-891-2274 any time, and faculty and staff can access our Employee Assistance Program here.
Even as many members of our campus head in separate directions for the summer, know that you are not alone and that there are people and resources at Bentley ready to support you in any way you might need. In times of sadness or anxiety, we can always look to one another for comfort and strength, even when we may not all be on campus together. Please continue to support each other and stand in continued solidarity with those impacted by the acts of violence and racism that have become all too prevalent in our country.
Dear Bentley Community,