A Message on the Verdicts in the Killing of George Floyd

Dear Campus Community,

It is with a mix of emotions that I write to you in the wake of the guilty verdicts in the trial of Derek Chauvin, whom we witnessed killing George Floyd by kneeling on his neck for 9 minutes and 29 seconds. 

This conviction cannot erase the sadness, pain, and anger of George Floyd’s needless death — or even begin to alleviate our outrage at the recent killings of Daunte Wright and Adam Toledo. Nor can it erase the recent acts of hatred and violence directed at Black, AAPI, Sikh, and Latinx communities, or our nation's appalling history of persecution and discrimination related to race, ethnicity, gender, LGBTQ+ status, and religion. While it is easy to become numbed by the relentlessness of this violence, we must never become complacent.

I ask that we use this moment to come together rather than to tear apart, to seek healing, and to affirm our commitment to never stop speaking out and fighting for what is right.

The college will be creating space for students for discussion and reflection on Thursday, April 22, during the common hour, 12:10-1:05 p.m., to bring us together as a caring community that models our stated values of equity, respect, and accountability. The link to the student gathering is here.

To all members of our community, please continue to take care of yourself and one another.

Shirley M. Collado
President, Ithaca College