The following is a message from ETSU leaders to students, faculty and staff on April
Dear ETSU Community,
The guilty verdict in the Derek Chauvin murder trial announced earlier today brings with it a flood of emotions for many in our community. Though some may find relief in the idea that justice has been served, the wounds our nation has experienced as a result of centuries of racial and social inequalities will not be healed through the decisions of a single jury or the events of a single day.
George Floyd’s murder has heightened our collective awareness of the racial inequities that remain pervasive in our society, inequities that threaten the safety and wellbeing of people of color. East Tennessee State University has a sacred duty to facilitate growth and understanding. To help tear down the walls that divide us and find common ground. That includes recognizing the diversity of perspectives and experiences within our community. It means doing our utmost to ensure that underrepresented voices are heard.
To tackle these difficult and uncomfortable issues, we must speak with honesty, integrity, and courage. More importantly, we must listen with empathy and compassion, seeking to learn and understand even when we feel scared or uncomfortable.
In this spirit, we invite students, faculty, and staff to come together peacefully to reflect, share, and listen as we all process the thoughts and emotions generated by the outcome in the Derek Chauvin trial and the all-too-common violent acts occurring regionally and nationally. We have set aside dedicated time and space, beginning tonight, for these conversations to be held in the Multicultural Center Lobby, D.P. Culp Student Center, 2nd floor, at the following times:
- Tuesday, April 20, 7 p.m. (tonight)
- Wednesday, April 21, 1 p.m.
- Friday, April 23, 3 p.m.
These sessions are being coordinated and hosted by our caring colleagues, Dr. Michelle Byrd, Dean of Students; Carshonda Martin, Director of the Mary V. Jordan Multicultural Center and Student Access and Success; and Dr. Dan Jones, Director of the Counseling Center.
In the coming days and weeks, we will provide information about additional opportunities to collaborate in the ongoing work to end racism, injustice, violence, and inequality. It is up to each of us to live the values of our ETSU community, which hold that people come first and are treated with dignity and respect.
We support you in service to this mission.
Dr. Brian Noland
Dr. Wilsie Bishop
Senior Vice President for Academics and Interim Provost
Dr. Keith Johnson
Vice President for Equity and Inclusion
Dr. Joe Sherlin
Vice President for Student Life and Enrollment
Student and Employee Support Resources
The ETSU Counseling Center provides personal counseling for students, as well as outreach and referrals. Students may contact the ETSU Counseling Center 423-439-3333. The Counseling Center is open from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday and is encouraging appointments via Zoom. The Bucs Press 2 service is available 24/7 by dialing 423-439-4841 and pressing 2 for a counselor.
The Dean of Students website is a resource for students and for student referral. The site includes the most often utilized resources along with links to other support services. Student referrals may be made to the Dean of Students office by submitting a CARE Report or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.