January 30, 2017
To: Members of the Campus Community
From: Rev. Philip L. Boroughs, S.J., president and Margaret N. Freije, vice president for academic affairs and dean of the college
Dear Members of the Campus Community,
It is challenging for us all to understand fully the implications of the various executive orders that have been issued by the new President over the past week, but there is no doubt that many are in clear opposition to our mission and to our commitments to a preferential option for the impoverished and powerless, and to justice.
The most recent executive order temporarily banning the entry into the United States of citizens from seven countries, and the subsequent judicial injunctions, has caused uncertainty and anxiety for many in our community. We reaffirm our institutional commitment to excellence in teaching, scholarship and research through engagement with faculty and students from across the country and around the world.
We have been at the AJCU and ACCU meetings in Washington DC this weekend and have been involved in a number of conversations with our colleagues at other Catholic institutions about how we might support our students and faculty and fulfill our mission as Catholic institutions of higher education in light of the events of the past few days.
We have both signed the petition at https://notoimmigrationban.com
In addition to hosting the events you heard about last week, we are also doing the following:
- Tina Chen, International Student Advisor, has reached out to our international students from the countries named in the executive order to reassure them of our support, and to help them connect with any resources that they might need. We will continue to work with these students as the legal landscape evolves. We are reaching out to faculty and staff who might be impacted by the executive order as well. If there are members of our community who need any support, please encourage them to be in touch with Amit Taneja at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- We have asked Amit Taneja to organize an immigration teach-in. Our hope is to provide an opportunity for all members of our community to engage one another and to broaden our understanding of the historical, political, sociological, economic and ethical implications of the issues raised by the recent executive orders. (Date/time are not yet set.)
- A variety of Worcester organizations are sponsoring a solidarity gathering for immigrant and refugee communities in Worcester to take place this coming Tuesday, January 31, at 6 p.m. at Worcester City Hall. The College will be sponsoring buses to and from the rally. Students who are interested in bus transportation should sign up here and faculty and staff should sign up here.
- We remind you that the College has recently added a resource page to our website that we will keep updated as new information becomes available.
The College's Mission Statement asks: “What are our obligations to one another? What is our special responsibility to the world's poor and powerless?” The events of this past week invite us to discern how each of us is called, individually and collectively, to live this mission and to “make the best of [our] own talents, to work together, to be sensitive to one another, to serve others, and to seek justice within and beyond the Holy Cross community.”
As always, we are grateful for the strength and support that this extraordinary community continually offers to each other and to those in our world who need it most.
Philip L. Boroughs, S.J.
Margaret N. Freije
Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the College