Communications from the Vice President

March 19
A popular racist myth is that Asian Americans are the “model minority”, rising above the prejudice and discrimination that is baked into American history and contemporary life. Yet, recent spikes in anti-Asian violence -- including the recent tragic murder of six Asian-American women-- call for fresh eyes to see the familiar, but often unacknowledged story in America's ongoing drama of hate, coupled with the violence that it begets. Love, indeed, is a proven antidote to darkness and the brazen racial hatred that threaten to unravel our society.
February 16
Women’s History Month 2021 commemorates a particularly pivotal time in the American story. We have witnessed history being made at the highest levels of power with the election of Vice President Kamala Harris, the first woman, Black and South Asian person to serve in the role. While that certainly gets much-deserved attention, the early months of 2021 have highlighted the contributions of women in a variety of areas.
February 11
]In Spring term of 2017, the UO launched the IDEALii framework, activating Diversity Action Plans (DAPs) in 35 units, with the audacious goal of implementing 657 tactics. Just 2.5 years later: • 58% of DAP tactics were met or in progress. • Our top DAP focus areas: improving departmental climate, student success, professional development and community outreach. • Our top three focal groups: undergraduate or graduate students, campus at large, and staff. Very few protected classes received targeted focus.
January 28
Just a month into 2021, we have already witnessed a number of defining moments that demonstrate the duality of where we stand as a country. On one hand, the elections of Kamala Harris, the first woman, Black and Asian American person to become Vice President of the United States, and Raphael Warnock, the first Black Senator from Georgia, represent major milestones in American politics. However, for many, the deadly Jan. 6 attack on the U.S.
November 30
A long road leads to a new home for the UO's black students
November 2
2020 has been a year of clarity. One of the most important examples of clarity, specifically in regards to ignoring lessons from history, was the spread of wildfires up and down the west coast of the United States. This trend of both the fires growing every year and our collective society choosing to accept this reality seemed to have no end in sight. Then something both surprising and predictable happened. The fires got so bad and became so widespread no one could ignore them anywhere. For days, parts of Oregon recorded the worst air quality of any cities on Earth.
September 15
To many, history is merely an academic subject. Engaging with it is a task, if not an ordeal, and when we do, we often feel a need to oversimplify. Either we’re learning from cautionary tales or celebrating two-dimensional triumphs. In reality, history is never something we can truly separate from ourselves. We’re always influenced by it. We’re constantly contributing to it. History is complex. It’s expansive. Yes, it is about education and celebration, but also everything in between and outside.
June 10
Dear Colleagues Below, please find recommendations for Black Out Wednesday. Since we are a community that values knowledge production and lifelong learning, I recommend that we use the time to become more informed, and also to act in appropriately courageous ways. Begin with the questions and tips below:What do we know about anti-blackness and anti-racism? How are we complicit in perpetuating it?
June 8
Reprinted from the Register-GuardOpinion: Posted Jun 7, 2020 at 12:01 AMFor centuries, black people have been the proverbial canaries of the American coal mine, literally sacrificing their lives to warn others of toxic conditions that must be cleared to ensure abundant and healthy lives. COVID-19 has made more commonplace, throughout America, the death and trauma that are all too familiar in our ghettos, reservations and barrios, with its heaviest toll being among people of color and women.
April 28
As the world continues to feel the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are seeing an emboldened anti-Asian sentiment sweep throughout the country, despite the fact that Asian Americans are overrepresented on the front lines fighting COVID-19. This story, unfortunately, isn’t new, but it’s a reminder of the importance of learning about and celebrating the historical contributions of ADPI communities, both this month and all throughout the year. During this watershed moment in American history, Asian, Desi, and Pacific Islander Heritage Month takes on even more importance.