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Post-election Unity in Diversity

Dear University of Maryland community:

The divisive election is over, but the mission and core values of our University remain unchanged. 

The education that we provide is the great equalizer of conditions in our democracy, a passport to social and economic mobility. The research, innovation, and public service that we do are essential to the well-being, prosperity, and security of the people of our state and the nation. 

We perform these missions under-girded by an abiding commitment to the values of intellectual liberty, free speech, equal opportunity, diversity, inclusion, safety from violence, and respect for the dignity of all persons.

Now the national political landscape has changed. While the new administration's policies and policy-makers are not yet known, the campaign rhetoric has caused anguish, consternation, and fear that are all too real for many in our community. Our Counseling Center staff, and many other staff and faculty, have been busy providing support to anyone in need. Thank you to our staff and faculty

UMD students have gathered in front of McKeldin Library and the Main Administration in a show of solidarity for students and communities who feel marginalized by the result of our democratic process. I stand in support of their right to have their voices heard.

Our country faces a growing divide, not only between "left" versus "right", but between "up" versus "down" -- between the college educated who are doing well (or have the prospect of doing well) and those who are not (and believe that their country has left them behind). 

As a nation, we must come together, heal the wounds, and expand opportunity and mobility for all of our citizens. As a public research and land-grant university, when we carry out our missions and live our values, we can also help build bridges and unify our fractured nation.

In our democracy, the promise of America is always greater than any one election.  As we have for 240 years, we can find common ground without sacrificing the high ground. Our journey towards a more perfect union has never been a straight line. As we continue our journey, we must do so with civil discourse, respectful listening, and empathy for diverse views.

As is emblazoned​ ​on ​the Great Seal of the United States: E Pluribus Unum​ -- from many​, one.​

 

Sincerely,

Wallace D. Loh
President, University of Maryland

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