Messages from the President

In early 2015, Emmanuel College President Sister Janet Eisner, SND expanded the President's Panel Supporting a Diverse and Inclusive Community to form a new President's Commission on Diversity and Inclusivity, made up of faculty, students, staff and administration.

The role of this commission is to address issues of discrimination through college-wide trainings, campus discussions about race, multicultural programs and services to support the well-being and success of all members of the Emmanuel College community.


May 5, 2015

To the Members of the Emmanuel College Community:

As we prepare for the joyous occasion of the College's 93rd Commencement Exercises, we are mindful of the continued suffering in our cities, our nation, and our world.  To commence is "to begin," or "to start" and as our students begin a new chapter in their lives, the College continues to find ways to bring the community together to reflect on how each of us is called to work toward social justice and peace. 

At the beginning of the spring semester I expanded the President's Panel to form a new President's Commission on Diversity and Inclusivity, made up of faculty, students, staff and administration to oversee efforts in training, programming, and services to support the well-being and success of all members of the Emmanuel College community.  I am pleased to see many of these initiatives in progress, recognizing that this is an ongoing process that will continue to grow and expand with each academic year. 

Highlights from the semester include the well-attended Community Dialogue Forum in April, the Hakim Lecture featuring Dr. Peggy McIntosh of the Wellesley Centers for Women, the Dorothy Day Lecture featuring Reverend Liz Walker, community activist and documentary film producer, a candlelight vigil to mourn the death of Freddie Gray, and liturgy on April 30 to remember in prayer the tragic losses experienced by members of the African American community, most recently in Baltimore, and our brothers and sisters in the Mediterranean, in Nepal and in other parts of the world.  Our student advisory committee for multicultural programs has also met to advise administrators on cultural competence training for students, faculty, and staff and other multicultural programming opportunities for the coming academic year. 

I am grateful to all members of our community who have come together to listen, learn, reflect and plan on how the College can continue to promote social justice on our campus and the world at large.  In a special way I would like to thank the members of the President's Commission on Diversity and Inclusivity and the Student Advisory Committee for Multicultural Programs for their dedication to this important work.  I am confident that we, as a community, will continue to work collaboratively on these endeavors. Our efforts, as always, are guided by the values of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur, the College's mission, the Catholic intellectual tradition, and the social teachings of the Catholic Church, and affirm "that every person is precious, that people are more important than things, and that the measure of every institution is whether it threatens or enhances the life and dignity of the human person." (United States Conference of Bishops)

Sincerely yours,

 
Sister Janet Eisner, SND
President


December 4, 2014

To the Members of the Emmanuel College Community:

In recent weeks, a number of events on the national stage, including the grand jury decision in New York City yesterday, have prompted discussions about the issue of racial discrimination in our country. This matter of national concern affects our own College community deeply.

Many have seen in these events a trend signifying ongoing racism in our larger society-and a troubling attitude that the lives of some matter less than others. On our own campus, these feelings have been raised in classrooms and residence halls and through social media. We hear and respect these serious concerns, some of which are based on people's personal experiences.

The Emmanuel College mission is rooted in the belief, central to the Catholic intellectual tradition, that every individual has an intrinsic dignity and worth. Every life matters. The College also encourages debate and discussion on the critical issues of our time in an atmosphere

of mutual respect and civility. The President's Panel Supporting a Diverse and Inclusive Community, established in 1992, is specifically charged with fostering this culture of openness.

We recognize the anxiety and sadness our students, faculty, staff and alumni may be feeling, and hope that ongoing discussions will provide opportunities for further support and insight. Next Wednesday, December 10th, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., in the Auditorium, the College will hold an open discussion facilitated by Carolyn Caveny, associate director of academic advising and chair of the president's panel. All members of the College community are welcome; a light lunch will be served.

Sincerely yours,

 
Sister Janet Eisner, SND
President