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Committee Introduction

Appointed by President Boroughs, S.J., the Mulledy/Healy Legacy Committee has been charged with making a recommendation regarding the naming of Mulledy Hall (named for the first president of the College) and to explore related issues concerning Healy Hall (named for one of the College's first alumni).

We have been asked to consider how and why we have named current buildings; what insights, assumptions, and conflicts of history are reflected in the naming our buildings; and how we might engage the ongoing issues and concerns that surface as a consequence of our institutional history and mission.  Specifically, this task has demanded that we study the complex role that the owning and sale of enslaved persons on the part of the Jesuits and Holy Cross alumni has played in our history.

We invite the Holy Cross community to learn more about our particular institutional history and how other colleges and universities have addressed the legacy of slavery.  We have provided a number of background resources here.   

We also invite your responses to the question regarding the names of the Mulledy and Healy residence halls.  We ask you to  help us to imagine ways to educate our community about the role that slavery has played in Holy Cross history and to address enduring racism in light of our identity and mission today. 

There are several ways to participate. In the navigation bar to the left, we have provided a link to a community response form that will be submitted to the committee.  You may also communicate directly with individual members of the committee

We are also hosting several listening sessions for the community to share input on the following dates:

Thursday, Feb. 11: 9-10:30 a.m. (reserved for staff)
Hogan 304/305
Moderators: Amit Taneja, Assoc. Dean for Diversity and Inclusion/Chief Diversity Officer, and Fr. Anthony Kuzniewski, S.J., Professor, History Department

Monday, Feb. 15: 12-1:30 p.m. (open to all)
Hogan 519
Moderators: Mary Roche, Associate Professor, Religious Studies Department, and Edward DeLuca, '17

Monday, Feb. 15: 4-5:30 p.m. (reserved for faculty)
Hogan 519 
Moderators: Mable Millner, Assoc. Dean of Students for Diversity and Inclusion/Director of Multicultural Education, Michael West, Associate Professor, History Department, and Lance Madden '18

Tuesday, Feb. 16: 6-7:30 p.m. (reserved for students)
Hogan 519
Moderators: Raha Maalin, '17, and Fr. William Campbell, S.J., Vice President for Mission

Thursday, Feb. 18: 4-5:30 p.m. (open to all)
Hogan 519 
Moderators: Liliana Castro, Community Development Coordinator, Mulledy Hall, and Stephanie Yuhl, Professor, History Department/Director of Montserrat

Thank you for your participation in this important process.

Sincerely,

Mulledy/Healy Legacy Committee

 

 

 


President's Letter to the Community
November 16, 2015

Dear Members of the Holy Cross Community:

I write while news coverage about the deadly and violent attacks in Paris is still unfolding. I join you in sending prayers and concern for our alumni, colleagues, friends, and family members who are in Paris.

Headlines of a very different nature are originating on college and university campuses from Yale to Missouri, and from Smith, Claremont McKenna, Boston College, and more. Many campuses are grappling with the challenge of how thoughtfully to discuss and respond to issues of race and injustice, past and present, in our academic environments.

As you may know, another Jesuit institution, Georgetown University, has also been in the news for similar reasons, and specifically for the names of two halls (Mulledy, a student residence, and McSherry, a meditation center) in light of their Jesuit namesakes’ involvement with slavery. To give you some very brief context: In 1838, Georgetown’s former president Rev. Thomas Mulledy (who had become the provincial of the Maryland Province) sold 272 slaves owned by the province to planters in Louisiana; Rev. William McSherry, another former Georgetown president, served as an adviser to the sale.

In September, Georgetown’s President John DeGioia convened a working group to study the university’s history with slavery and make recommendations for events, dialogue, and action.

This weekend, after similar conversations had taken place in classrooms and residence halls, and after students drew up a list of demands, organized demonstrations, and met with President DeGioia, he announced that he and the Board of Trustees had accepted the working group’s recommendation: to remove the names from the two buildings. You can read President DeGioia’s announcement to the university community here, and the Georgetown student newspaper coverage here.

Rev. Thomas Mulledy was Holy Cross’ first president (1843-45). Our residence hall, built in 1966, is named for him.

For many of you, I know this information about Holy Cross and our founding president may be new and even shocking. However, it has been documented and reported for some time. For helpful and important context and background, you can reference the history of Holy Cross, "Thy Honored Name", by history professor and College historian Rev. Anthony Kuzniewski, S.J. Here is a link to relevant pages of Fr. Kuzniewski’s book.

Since the fall, I have been following the progress of Georgetown’s working group, and have been in conversations with some of our alumni, faculty, and staff about these same issues. While our historical situation differs somewhat from that of Georgetown, I believe we too must investigate what this issue means for us today.

I am currently assembling a Holy Cross group to lead a study and College-wide discussion process, and to recommend a course of action. The group I will appoint will include students, faculty and staff and I will announce the names of members of the study group before the end of the week. I look forward to inviting all members of our community to participate in the group’s dialogue, and assure you there will be ample opportunities for your participation.

I am personally quite open to a variety of solutions, and it is my hope that we, as a community, will engage in an educational process where we have thoughtful conversation, learn from one another, and shape the next steps for our campus. This will take more time and effort, but in the end we will have discerned this issue together, informed by the shared knowledge and experience of our students, faculty, staff, and alumni.

As our campus-wide Unity Week programming comes to a conclusion, I hope you will have the opportunity to join me tonight, Monday, Nov. 16, at 7:30 in Hogan Ballroom for the keynote address featuring our speaker Jose Antonio Vargas, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and filmmaker, and an undocumented immigrant. I look forward to learning more about his work on race and immigration policies.

Thank you for what you do each day for Holy Cross. I am pleased to be a member of a community where conversations — including conversations involving difficult subjects — can take place. As our Mission Statement reads, we are a community called upon “to be open to new ideas, to be patient with ambiguity and uncertainty, to combine a passion for truth with respect for the views of others.” As we look back on our history and toward our future, I know that our shared commitment will serve us very well. 

 

Sincerely,

Boroughs

Rev. Philip L. Boroughs, S.J.
President

 


Fr. William R. Campbell, S.J.'s Letter to the Community
February 5, 2016  

Dear Members of the Campus Community:

I write to you on behalf of the members of the Mulledy/Healy Legacy Committee, appointed by Fr. Philip Boroughs, S.J. last semester to explore the legacy of slavery associated with Fr. Thomas Mulledy, S.J., first president of Holy Cross, and the members of the Healy Family, alumni of the College, for whom Mulledy and Healy residence halls are named. Next week, more information about the work of our Committee, and how you can assist our work, including educational resources, will be made available.

In the meantime, we ask you to "Save The Date" so as to participate in one of the scheduled listening sessions listed below. Members of the Committee will facilitate each session, and helpful resources will be provided.

Again, this email is simply to serve as a "Save the Date" announcement.

Thursday, Feb. 11: 9-10:30 a.m. (reserved for staff)
Hogan 304/305
Amit Taneja, Assoc. Dean for Diversity and Inclusion/Chief Diversity Officer and Fr. Anthony Kuzniewski, S.J., Professor, History Department

Monday, Feb. 15: 12-1:30 p.m. (open to all)
Hogan 519
Mary Roche, Associate Professor, Religious Studies Department and Edward DeLuca, '17

Monday, Feb. 15: 4-5:30 p.m. (reserved for faculty)
Hogan 519  
Mable Millner, Assoc. Dean of Students for Diversity and Inclusion/Director of Multicultural Education, Michael West, Professor, History Department and Lance Madden, '18

Tuesday, Feb. 16: 6-7:30 p.m. (reserved for students)
Hogan 519
Raha Maalin, '17 and Fr. William Campbell, S.J., Vice President for Mission 

Thursday, Feb. 18: 4-5:30 p.m. (open to all)
Hogan 519  
Liliana Castro, Community Development Coordinator, Mulledy Hall and Stephanie Yuhl, Professor, History Department/Director of Montserrat

Thank you.

Fr. William R. Campbell, S.J.
Chair: Mulledy/Healy Legacy Committee