Dear students, faculty and staff,
As the nation awaits the verdict of Derek Chauvin’s murder trial, I am reaching out to reaffirm that SUNY Cortland is committed to maintaining an environment where students from all backgrounds can thrive and grow as members of a caring, inclusive community. Each of you – regardless of your background, race or beliefs – deserves to be safe and treated with respect.
However, we recognize that racism is part of the daily experience of many SUNY Cortland students of color, and high-profile cases of unarmed Black and brown citizens being killed by police can be traumatic. Many members of our community probably feel frightened, angry and unsure of their place in American society. Please know that you have a place at SUNY Cortland and we support you.
I want to make you aware of the following:
We live during a time of great division that too often results in unnecessary verbal or physical violence. Please stay engaged, remain hopeful and know that SUNY Cortland remains strongly committed to fighting racism in all its forms.
All the best,
Erik J. Bitterbaum