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A Message from the President: April 20, 2021

April 20, 2021

Dear Members of the Villanova Community,

April 20, 2021, will be one of those dates that we will remember where we were when we heard the news. Today, a jury of his peers found Derek Chauvin guilty of the murder of George Floyd.

This past year has been a period of deep pain, anxiety and uncertainty for many of us. May 25, 2020, was a moment when our community and world experienced—and re-experienced—feelings of grief, loss and anger at injustices that have occurred for far too long.

With the outcome of this trial now known, but with the acknowledgement that there is still much work to do, let us come together as a community. Let us continue to acknowledge the trauma experienced far too often by Black Americans and actively commit to the work of anti-racism and justice inherent in our mission as an Augustinian Catholic university. Today is not a celebration, but a recognition of the work that still needs to be done before true change and healing can occur.

We must continue in our commitment to Caritas;

We must continue to be restless for justice;

And we must continue to be rooted in accountability as we advance the work of anti-racism at Villanova and in our communities.

Facing the real consequences of racial injustice in our country is not easy. If you are struggling, know that you are not alone, and that connection, support and resources can be found through the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion; the Office for Mission and Ministry; the Counseling Center; CASA; and Office of Intercultural Affairs, just to name a few areas. Also, any students who wish to gather informally as a community are invited to the Riley Ellipse around 8 p.m. this evening. Please continue to follow all COVID precautions should you attend.

As we work through this challenging time, let us pray for the soul of George Floyd and all others who have lost their lives unjustly, and for their families and friends who continue to mourn. Let us work toward healing the wounds that have been created in our community and our country. And let us pray for a more just and peaceful world. As Villanovans we will do our part to create it—starting right here with our own community, our own University. 

We do this important work with each other, and for each other. Together we can, and will, face whatever comes.