Editor's Note: UTSA President Taylor Eighmy sent this email to UTSA students further updating them on Monday's classroom incident.
(Nov. 13, 2018) -- Dear Roadrunners,
I am writing to provide an update regarding yesterday’s classroom incident and address some of the specific questions and concerns you may have.
We are currently conducting two separate investigations into the matter, one on potential discrimination (conducted by our Office of Equal Opportunity Services) and the other on classroom management (conducted through the Provost’s Office by Interim Dean Grimes in the College of Sciences). Provost Espy and I are committed to ensuring an equitable process for both the student and faculty member. Interim Dean Grimes and our EOS office are working quickly and diligently to gather the facts, and both the student and the faculty member have met separately with those conducting the investigations.
For the best interest of all involved, the faculty member’s classes will be taught by another faculty member for the remainder of the semester. Her students have been informed. The student involved in the incident has been welcomed back to class and offered support services. Once the two investigations are complete next week, appropriate administrative action will be determined.
No matter the outcome of the investigations, the incident shows issues that extend far beyond the events of yesterday. The reactions expressed through social media, emails, phone calls and group meetings I’ve attended confirm that feelings of marginalization on the part of some students—especially our African American students—are real and profound.
The bottom line: regardless of the final outcomes regarding yesterday’s incident, we have an obligation as an institution to take a hard look at our campus climate—especially for students of color—and enact systemic change to make UTSA a more inclusive campus.
Here are my commitments to you, as your president:
I expect to be held accountable in these matters, and expect the same from the entire campus community. I promise to keep you updated both on the outcomes of yesterday’s incident, as well as the broader issues surrounding UTSA’s inclusivity.
Thanks to those of you who have shared your thoughts and concerns with me, and for the genuine care you have for each other and for UTSA.
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The University of Texas at San Antonio is dedicated to the advancement of knowledge through research and discovery, teaching and learning, community engagement and public service. As an institution of access and excellence, UTSA embraces multicultural traditions and serves as a center for intellectual and creative resources as well as a catalyst for socioeconomic development and the commercialization of intellectual property - for Texas, the nation and the world.
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The University of Texas at San Antonio, a Hispanic Serving Institution situated in a global city that has been a crossroads of peoples and cultures for centuries, values diversity and inclusion in all aspects of university life. As an institution expressly founded to advance the education of Mexican Americans and other underserved communities, our university is committed to ending generations of discrimination and inequity. UTSA, a premier public research university, fosters academic excellence through a community of dialogue, discovery and innovation that embraces the uniqueness of each voice.