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A Message from President Jackson

Deborah Jackson
June 1, 2020
Dear Colleagues:
Over the past week, we have awakened every morning and gone to bed every night, as a nation in pain. As individuals and as a community, we are searching for ways to handle our pain in the face of yet another unjust, inexcusable and tragic loss of life.  The senseless death of George Floyd, an African American man, at the hands of a police officer has triggered a week of protest and outrage in cities across the country.  We should not accept that what we have witnessed over the past week is normal for America. 
There are no easy answers, there is no simple advice for where we go from here as a community and as a nation.  But one thing we know is true, we must address and eradicate the issues of racism, injustice, inequity, unequal opportunity, bias, discrimination and bigotry, and racially targeted violence in our nation.  The impact of injustice is revealed in senseless violence such as this, the disparities of health outcomes due to COVID 19, and the disproportionate economic impact on low income communities and people of color. 
I ask that each and every one of us, as members of the Cambridge College community, remember and uphold the historical principles on which this institution was founded.  We were founded nearly 50 years ago on the principle of social justice, determined to open the doors of opportunity to those "for whom those opportunities may have been limited or denied."  Ours is a diverse community that values the voices and engagement of all of our members - respecting differences in race, ethnicity, gender identity, national origin, economic status and religious beliefs.  In such a diverse community we learn and experience the great value of embracing and respecting these differences.  We must carry these lessons into our lives and communities outside of the walls of Cambridge College.
I ask and implore each and every one of us to be a part of the solution.  I ask that we search our individual hearts and souls to determine how we can "be the change" that we want to see in achieving social justice in our society.  
I ask that we support one another during these heartbreaking and difficult times. I have received messages of stress, anxiety, and helplessness on how we deal with this complexity of stresses that are impacting all of us.  I encourage us to reach out to one another - for students to reach out to faculty and advisors and the Office of Student Affairs; for faculty to reach out to your Deans and our Office of Academic Affairs; for employees to reach out to your supervisor or executive administrator or the Office of Human Resources.    We are here to talk to you, to hear your needs and to determine how we can provide greater support for one another.  We don't have all of the answers but we have the commitment to help one another. 
I have awakened every morning and gone to bed every night in pain with the images of George Floyd, and too many others like him, etched in my mind.  I find strength in you and the mission that brings us together as a community.  I find hope in the belief that our unified commitment will fuel the transformation to justice that our nation urgently needs.
In closing, let us not forget the words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.:
The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands in times of challenge and controversy.  
With warm regards,

Deborah C. Jackson

Cambridge College