An Open Letter Addressed to the UNH Community from the Deans Council
September 18, 2001
We are writing to express our sympathy to those of you with loved ones harmed by the attacks on Tuesday in New York City, Washington, DC, and Pennsylvania on September 11, and to let all of you know that our offices are available to you for whatever assistance you might seek. Those of us who work and live in a university community have a special responsibility, we believe, to make sense of what has occurred and to find ways to help others in this difficult period of our nation's history. We also have a responsibility to re-commit ourselves to the pursuit of knowledge that can reduce the likelihood of such events in the future -- through the responsible application of the many disciplines we represent. As enervating as the last few days have been, a belief that what we do as teachers, researchers, and students can make the world a better place provides the necessary energy and insight for facing the present circumstances.
We are especially concerned that our international students feel safe and secure. Many of you have only recently arrived in the United States, and we are sure you did not expect to have to cope with this magnitude of threat and anxiety. Some of you may feel particularly vulnerable because of your national origin or religious identity, in light of the rush to judgment we are witnessing from some media and segments of the public. Be assured that the University will not tolerate any expression of prejudice or discrimination in the wake of the attacks. In the days ahead, we must demonstrate the strength of our democratic ideals and our resolve to protect human dignity and freedom.
The recent statements from President Leitzel and Shaima Faisal, president of the Muslim Student Association are important parts of the University's response to last week's attacks. Both of these statements, available on the University's web page, convey the caring and conviction that reflect the best of our University. If you would like additional information about resources and activities related to our recovery from the attacks, you may go to http://www.unh.edu/unhresponse.html. If you or someone you know needs individual support or counseling, don't hesitate to contact the UNH Counseling Center at 862-2090. And always feel free to come to your dean's office or the Graduate School in Thompson Hall for advice or assistance.
We wish you peace, understanding, and comfort.
Steve Bolander, Whittemore School of Business and Economics