University Leaders Condemn Violence Against Asian and Asian American Communities

Messages of Support and Solidarity to the UMD Community and Beyond

Updated March 26, 2021

Since the beginning of the pandemic there has been a surge in anti-Asian sentiment in the U.S., leading most recently to the tragic and violent attacks in Atlanta, which resulted in eight deaths. 

“I stand in solidarity with members of the Asian and Asian American community and condemn these senseless acts of hate and violence. We must unite to fight against this hate.” 

- President Pines, March 23 message to campus, “In solidarity with Asian and Asian American Communities

On March 17, 2021, President Pines responded on Twitter to condemn the mass shooting in Atlanta targeting Asians and Asian Americans, and to offer resources to support an anti-racist society:  

I am horrified by another mass shooting, and I am thinking of the victims. I am also thinking of Asian and Asian American people who are fearful as racist targeting is on the rise. Please show your humanity toward one another, and let’s unite against senseless acts of violence.

If you are looking for support or ways to pursue a more peaceful and anti-racist society, I encourage you to visit calendar.umd.edu. Consider participating in events like Physically Distant, Virtually Connected: Drop-In Space for Community and Support.

In the aftermath of the violence in Atlanta, a recent story in Maryland Today, “Shootings Followed ‘Intensified Feeling of Anxiety’ in Asian American Communities,” features Janelle Wong, professor of American studies and government and politics, and a faculty member in the Asian American Studies Program at UMD, explaining the history of anti-Asian bias, the impact of political and economic instability and the importance of reaching across racial lines. 

Vice President for Diversity and Inclusion Georgina Dodge and Vice President for Student Affairs Patty Perillo sent a message to the campus community on March 4, 2021, “Uniting for Asian and Asian American communities,” strongly condemning attacks on Asian and Asian American individuals and communities, and providing resources and support to our campus community. 

Student organizations on campus are hosting a series of events in partnership with the university’s office of Multicultural Involvement & Community Advocacy and other campus offices to support the Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders community. 

A student-led vigil on March 24 was held to mourn the recent rise in attacks on the Asian American community:

Past and upcoming events include: 

          Open Discussion on Anti-Asian Violence
          Monday, March 22, 7 p.m. 

          Candlelight Vigil: Anti-Asian Hate Crime Victims
          Wednesday, March 24, 6 p.m., McKeldin Mall

          AAPI Community Processing Space
          Thursday, March 25, 4 p.m. 

          What's in a Name? The Significance of Asian American, AAPI, APIDA, and More
          Thursday, March 25, 6 p.m. 

          The Circle: Centering the AAPI Community
          Tuesday, March 30, 4 p.m.

          Faculty and Staff Healing Space: Ongoing Racial Trauma within AAPI communities
          Wednesday, March 31, 4 p.m.

Support and resources are available from several campus departments, including Diversity Training & Education, Bias Incident Support ServicesInternational Student & Scholar Services, the Office of Multicultural Involvement & Community Advocacy (MICA), UMD's chaplains, the Asian American Studies Program (AASP), the Faculty Staff Assistance Program (FSAP) and the Counseling Center.

The university has continued to amplify these important messages through its various social media channels to stand in solidarity with Asian and Asian American members of our community and beyond.



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