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 Tuesday, February 22, 2005 IssueFaculty/Staff E-Newsletter

FROM THE CHANCELLOR

Full Speed Ahead

The University of Colorado at Boulder is certainly a vibrant and evolving site of discovery and learning. As provost for the University, and now as interim chancellor, I am privileged to work with our gifted and dedicated faculty, staff and students. I am proud to join with you in campuswide efforts to provide an interdisciplinary educational experience for our community, one that promotes critical thinking, rigorous analyses, informed and serious dialogues, tolerance and respect. To that end, I'd like to share with you my plans for helping to secure the campus's short-term and long-term future.

Priorities

In addition to oversight of vital academic issues, my three highest priorities are to (1) continue implementing the Quality for Colorado strategic plan for the campus, with its emphasis on quality in academics; (2) continue direct oversight of athletics, which includes hiring an outstanding athletics director; and (3) continue to address campus life and behavioral issues, such as implementing alcohol initiatives.

I also am very much committed to improving the campus response to issues related to sexual harassment, sexual assault and the overall climate for women on this campus. The Chancellor's Committee on Women is taking a leadership role in this effort by launching a study of the campus as an environment for women. This spring, CCW is conducting a series of town hall meetings in order to identify ways to improve the campus climate. I encourage our students, staff and faculty to participate in these meetings and take an active role in addressing these issues.

Enhancing diversity is another important priority for me. I have worked with many of you on a variety of diversity programs and initiatives over the years and am familiar with the successes we've experienced and the challenges we face. In addition, as a first-generation college student, I can understand the issues facing many underrepresented students in their efforts to earn a college degree.

I want to emphasize that it is not just the responsibility of people of color, women and others from underrepresented groups to work towards building a more diverse community - it is everyone's responsibility. I am calling for participation from all segments of the campus community in our diversity efforts and I strongly encourage you all to get involved in the many diversity activities that are offered around the campus.

Moving Forward

As you know, the campus has been deeply affected recently by intense public response to an essay written by Professor Ward Churchill following the 9/11 tragedy. This issue has raised fundamental questions about the boundaries of free expression, academic freedom and tenure protections. I am currently engaged in an internal review of Professor Churchill's writings, speeches, tape recordings and other works to determine whether he may have overstepped his bounds as a faculty member. I want to assure you that the University will observe due process while responding to these important issues.

In the meantime, I am fully devoted to moving the Boulder campus forward. Thank you all for your support and for your many contributions to the University of Colorado at Boulder. I have great confidence in the high quality and dedication of our faculty and staff, and I look forward to working with you toward our common goals.



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