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March 18, 2021
After the targeted shootings of six Asian women in the Atlanta area this week, I want to reach out to reaffirm MSU Denver’s stance as an anti-racist institution and offer support to Asian, Pacific Islander and Desi American (APIDA) members of our community and others who are hurting after another instance of racial violence in our country.
Sadly, Tuesday’s tragedy did not occur in a vacuum. Dangerous rhetoric attributing Covid-19 to China or Asia has led to a rise in anti-Asian bias in the U.S. – including a 149% increase in anti-Asian hate crimes in America’s largest cities in 2020, according to an analysis of official police data by the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University at San Bernardino. Brutal attacks on elderly Asian Americans have left many in the community scared and angry.
Our country has a long history of racially motivated bias and discrimination, including targeting immigrants and Americans of Asian descent. There is no place for such hate at MSU Denver.
Last summer, I committed to anti-racist work as did MSU Denver’s faculty, staff and trustees who have established Sustainable Racial Justice Committees. We also want to invest in and amplify new and longstanding anti-racist initiatives being done by others around campus, including work by our faculty. This work is ongoing and essential to the mission of this University.
Our Center for Multicultural Engagement and Inclusion is hosting a virtual event for students to come together Friday in solidarity with the APIDA community.
Friday, March 19
11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
MSU Denver employees can connect with the APIDA Faculty and Staff Alliance and learn more by contacting Courtney Matsumoto, data analyst and web manager for the College of Letters, Arts and Sciences; AnnJanette Alejano-Steele, associate dean of the College of Health and Applied Sciences; Sandra Leu Bonanno, assistant professor of elementary education; Sophia Tran, general chemistry laboratory instructor; or Jade Hoyer, assistant professor of art.
Additionally, the Counseling Center is planning to convene a group in the coming weeks to focus on healing and support for APIDA community members, so look for more info on that later.
I want to reiterate again MSU Denver’s support for the APIDA community. It’s important that we continue to support one another and uphold our values in the toughest of times.
Janine Davidson, Ph.D.
President, MSU Denver