With the recent national events that have occurred, many individuals feel uneasy. Last Tuesday (11/15), our University of Tulsa president, Dr. Gerard Clancy gave a public address regarding the safety of our campus and the concerns that students express. The University of Tulsa represents students of many backgrounds from all over the world and we take pride in this. The international students are what make this university so unique. Dr. Clancy stressed how racism will not be tolerated in any respect. Each student makes up a very significant part to the university as a whole. It is vital that every student feel comfortable in expressing and practicing their values and beliefs.
President Clancy also mentioned that his team and Vice President Jackie Caldwell are developing a hotline for students to report incidents or seek help. This only adds to the already abundant methods of support available on campus such as the the student awareness office, Alexander Health Center, emergency blue boxes, and campus security. While responding to a question raised about support systems by AIS Associate Vice President Vandit Trivedi, Vice President Caldwell also mentioned that her office is always open for students. Also in attendance at this event was Vice President Earl Johnson, Director of Student Activities Gary Brown, International Student Services Dean Pamela Smith, deans from several colleges, AIS leadership team and International Student Services staff.
Last Friday (11/11), TU student, Kyla Sloan, and her team created a post-election safe zone event for the campus community. TU administration, faculty and the students came together to discuss their concerns and emotions in a caring and accepting environment. There are words of more safe-zone sessions and training in the future.
Along with many student groups on campus, the Association of International Students is also trying to spread awareness of the safety pin movement. For anyone no matter what background who is feeling unsafe during these times, the safety pin is a sort of reassuring support system. The person wearing a safety pin represents a shelter for those groups who feel scared and will comfort them in any way possible. Several students as well as faculty members have started wearing safety pins to show their care. We are encouraging more people to be involved in this action and we hope it will bring our community closer. Everyone is working together to ensure the utmost safety in the campus. No one should feel in danger at this university.
“Strength lies in differences, not in similarities”
-Stephen R. Covey