Department of Climate and Space Sciences and Engineering in the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan


A message from the Climate & Space Department Chair: Our Diverse, Collegial Culture

Posted: November 14, 2016

A message from the Climate & Space Department Chair: Our Diverse, Collegial Culture

A message from Climate & Space Department Chair, Professor James Slavin: 

Dear CLaSP Faculty, Students and Staff,

University President Schlissel and Dean Gallimore have sent out open letters since last week’s national election to re-assure the UM community that, while the recent election gave voice to some ugly sentiments, they will have no impact upon our core values and policies in support of a diverse, collegial culture dedicated to scholarship, education and service to all peoples.  

Here in CLaSP we strongly support and celebrate Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and, more importantly, we give testimony to them by how we comport ourselves each day. 

Finally, I want to to call your attention to the resources described in President Schlissel’s letter (below) for reporting hate crimes and bias-related incidents to the University’s Division of Public Safety.

- Jim


Letter from University of Michigan President Mark Schlissel:

To All Members of the University Community:

In the days since last Tuesday’s election, people in our community have experienced hateful attacks, both on an individual level and as members of groups.  As leaders of our campus, we want to speak out against these behaviors and express our hopes for moving forward.

We saw a threatening message painted on the rock near our campus; a student walking near campus was threatened with being lighted on fire because she wore a hajib; another student left his apartment to go to class and found a swastika with a message telling him to go home.  Some students have also been shouted at and accused of being racist because of their political views.  

Emotions are high all across the political spectrum. We hope all members of our community can agree that we must not stand silent while facing expressions of bigotry, discrimination or hate that have become part of our national political discourse. Only by speaking out against personal attacks, hate and threats can we move on to have the discussions that will be necessary for our campus and our nation to reach its full potential. 

We do not seek to suppress political speech or ongoing debate of key issues. Rather, we are asking everyone to reject hate and bigotry and to provide personal support for one another. People of widely varying ideologies have expressed this idea, and we are confident that it represents the ideals of the vast majority of our community. 

Additionally, members of our community have asked about resources that are available to help them report or address episodes of bias and hate in the campus community during what is a difficult time for many.  

All members of the campus community may contact the Bias Response Team here.  

Information on Reporting on Hate Crimes and Bias-Related Incidents is here.  

The Center for Research on Learning and Teaching’s advice on Responding to Incidents of Hate Speech is here.   

 A list of Available Resources from our Division of Public Safety and Security is here

While we are deeply concerned about the many incidents of hate and bigotry that have occurred recently, we are also buoyed by the way in which many in our community have come together to support each other. Thanks to everyone in the University of Michigan community who is working to advance respect, inclusivity and peaceful expression. We applaud our students, faculty and staff who endeavor to "challenge the present and enrich the future."


Mark S. Schlissel


Martha E. Pollack

Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs

E. Royster Harper

Vice President for Student Life

Robert M. Sellers

Vice Provost for Equity & Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer

William Schultz

Chair, SACUA/Senate Assembly

David Schafer

President, Central Student Government

Chukwuka C. Mbagwu

President, Rackham Student Government

Eddie L. Washington, Jr.

Executive Director, Division of Public Safety and Security

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