Dear campus community,
From the very first day of my presidency, I have made one of my top priorities the creation of a more inclusive and multicultural environment on our campus. Since becoming president, my administration has worked with our community to prioritize and amplify this work - partnering with many student leaders on critical issues, honoring Maryland trailblazers, and pursuing an anti-racist agenda.
We remain committed to finding more ways to celebrate Black history and culture.
Last year, the university granted employees administrative leave to observe Juneteenth. This day of celebration and reflection commemorates the end of slavery in the United States—two and a half years after President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation. To continue this important tradition, University System of Maryland Chancellor Jay A. Perman has announced that Juneteenth will be designated as a holiday across USM institutions.
Given that Juneteenth falls on a Saturday this year, the observance will be on Friday, June 18, 2021. Employees will be granted administrative leave on this day and all summer session classes will be canceled. University Human Resources will follow up with additional information for administrators, as needed.
Let’s use this time to reflect on both our history and recent events, and how we continue to work to eradicate anti-Black racism - and racism in all its forms - together.
Darryll J. Pines
President, University of Maryland