Dear Engineering Colleagues, Students and Friends:
 
The heart-breaking events of this week continue to touch a deep nerve with me, and I know many of you have felt this as well. Such acts of hatred and bias are incredibly troubling, and we must stand together to condemn the systemic discrimination that continues to plague our society. Engineers are called to use our knowledge and skill to serve and advance humanity, and to that end we must also unite in a clear voice against injustice. 
 
I have stated my intent before about building an inclusive environment, and these tragic circumstances against people who have already been marginalized for far too long only strengthen and reaffirm my commitment – and that of Drexel Engineering’s collective commitment – to eliminate racism, sexism and other inequities in our community and beyond. 
 
We all have a responsibility to listen, to come together and to support each other in trying times. If you haven’t already, I ask that you read President Fry’s message on  becoming active allies in the fight against racism . For students, please know that our  Office of Counseling and Health Services  has people you can talk to about these difficult times. If you are on the faculty and professional staff, the  Employee Assistance Program  is available to you 24/7.
 
It is critical that we continually examine our own bias and hold open, honest dialogue with each other as we continue the challenging work of dismantling barriers and eliminating disparities. I encourage you to join me in the upcoming dialogue lead by Drexel’s Chief Diversity Officer Kim Gholston ( event information will be forthcoming from OED ). In addition, our end-of-quarter college meeting stands for next Monday, June 8, at 3 p.m., and we will reserve time for open discussion. A Zoom link will be forthcoming. 
 
We can only answer the call of the engineer to advance humanity if we remain willing and dedicated to creating an inclusive culture in which every individual feels safe and empowered. At a time when physical distancing impacts our daily lives, we can still unite in social solidarity with those in mourning and pain. On behalf of the entire Drexel Engineering community, I express my profound compassion for all who have experienced fear, pain and grief, and want you to know that we stand with you and we support you. And please continue to share your thoughts, experiences and ideas - you will be heard.
 
Sincerely,
Sharon L. Walker, PhD
Dean and Distinguished Professor
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