By Published: June 5, 2020

We are deeply saddened by the continued disparate and unwarranted police violence against Black persons across the United States. 

With the recent police-involved deaths of George Floyd in Minneapolis and Breonna Taylor in Louisville, Kentucky, we want Black students, staff and faculty of the College of Arts and Sciences community to know that we are committed to supporting you and to fostering a community that makes concerted efforts to combat and eradicate anti-Black racism and systemic racism across our campus and beyond. 


Hillary Potter and James W.C. White

These recent publicized cases of police violence against African Americans occurred as Black, Indigenous and Latinx communities in the United States have suffered higher rates of COVID-19 cases and deaths. 

As an institution of higher learning and, specific to A&S, as the liberal arts college of CU Boulder, it is our job to furnish students with knowledge that assists them in the present and will carry them forward to be critical thinkers who work toward a better world, one that is more humane, more equitable and less oppressive. 

We urge A&S faculty and staff—especially those situated in positions of social and racial privilege—to assure that you are adequately equipped with the skills and resources to support Black, Latinx, Asian and Indigenous students and faculty and staff colleagues. 

We urge A&S students—also especially those with social and racial privilege—to take advantage of the resources available to you to effect the constructive change you envision in our society, including seeking out courses that allow for semester-long nuanced analyses into issues addressed in this message, such as those courses offered in the Departments of Ethnic Studies, Asian Languages & Civilizations, Spanish & Portuguese, Women & Gender Studies, History, Sociology, and Theatre & Dance.

We welcome and request your suggestions for how A&S faculty, staff and students can collaborate on actions to address police and state violence, anti-Black racism and systemic racism. This crowdsourcing of initiatives allows for elevating and centering the experiences of individuals and groups within our college community who have historically been and continue to be disproportionately impacted by discriminatory and exclusive practices. 

With the goal of unifying your voices in a collaborative manner, we seek to have this statement reach beyond a one-off response to racialized police and state violence and to serve as an impetus for substantial change.

Hillary Potter is associate dean for inclusive practice. James W.C. White is interim dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.