Below are statements from UCLA campus leaders to their schools and divisions following the November 8, 2016 presidential election.
Message from Vice Provost Cindy Fan
I wanted to forward a message Chris Erickson and I sent to the Institute’s Teaching Faculty encouraging them to accommodate students’ post-election feelings and concerns, pasted at the end of this email message. I encourage you to be available to your peers, staff and students who may be stunned by the results and need to talk in the aftermath of an extremely divisive Presidential election. And everyone is invited to tonight’s event “Processing the Election” at Royce Hall https://equity.ucla.edu/events/crosscheck-live-processing-the-election
In addition, I’d like to share with you some personal thoughts. As an immigrant, international student (I am still learning every day), woman, minority, strong believer in diversity and advocate for international education, I too was shocked by the election results. What a contrast from just three days ago when I was in Beijing experiencing rapid globalization first-hand, eager to return home to cast my vote!
I would like to highlight two things I value and hold dearly. Regardless of one’s political views, this is a country that enables citizens’ voices to be heard. Political opinions are diverse even in a blue state like California and at UCLA, and I respect such diversity. This system beats many others where diverse voices are not allowed, let alone heard.
Second, colleagues like yourselves remind me every day how fortunate I am to be surrounded by scholars whose students will hopefully shape this country’s future and, who knows, may one day become the President of the United States. Your research and teaching opens eyes about areas and regions of the world and global issues; such work is even more important now! I am more committed than ever to international research, education, and engagement. And let me share a statement from AIEA:
The Association of International Education Administrators (AIEA), in the wake of the US Presidential Campaign and Election, and in understanding that international higher education is inclusive of all, issues a call to the international education community and beyond for a renewed commitment to principles that underlie the need for global engagement and mutual understanding. Furthermore, AIEA calls for community solidarity and action at all levels and reaffirms AIEA's commitment to the value of US engagement with the world in mutually beneficial relationships in support of the common good. In regard to policy, AIEA encourages international educators to stay abreast of developments that impact international education, to advocate for policies that support the education and preparation of students to live in our interdependent society, and to engage in positive, ethical, and respectful discussion and debate with those within and beyond our campus communities as we continue to provide leadership that brings those from different backgrounds together in support of our diverse students.
Chris has kindly set aside some time at the Directors and Chairs meeting today for a post-election discussion, and I look forward to seeing you there.
Dear International Institute Teaching Faculty:
The U.S. presidential election has been a highly emotional process for many. We understand that many UCLA students are distressed about the election results. While of course it is up to each instructor to decide how to conduct her or his class, if you think it appropriate we ask that you consider accommodating their feelings and concerns during this post-election period and in the coming academic terms when you might be teaching.
Chris Erickson and Cindy Fan
Message from Interim Dean Gómez
To Students, Staff and Faculty in the UCLA College Division of Social Sciences,
Last night we learned the results of a hard-fought election with split results—as of 5pm the day after the election, Hillary Clinton leads in the popular vote but Donald Trump is President-elect due to how Electoral College votes are apportioned. While this campaign has been exceptionally divisive, we have seen this outcome before—Bush v. Gore in 2000, when irregularities in Florida’s vote count led the election results to ultimately require action by the U.S. Supreme Court. In that respect, we needn’t look too far back in our history to see that elections can be close and divisive (I realize that for some of you, 2000 seems like a long time ago!).
We have a resilient body politic and a political system that privileges checks and balances by design and, thus, deliberately limits presidential power. We pride ourselves on the peaceful transition of power, and today President Obama and Secretary Clinton have led by example in that regard.
At the same time, most of us voted in California (though some students may have voted absentee in their home states) where Clinton garnered 5.4 million votes compared to Trump’s 2.9 million. As a community, we must acknowledge strong feelings on both sides that are likely to persist for some time. As Dean, I also would urge us to recognize that some students, staff and faculty may feel especially vulnerable given some of President-elect Trump’s campaign rhetoric as well as comments by a minority of his supporters.
In particular, I have heard today from members of our community who have DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, President Obama’s executive order) status as non-citizens or who have family members who are undocumented immigrants who are alarmed and fearful about the future. Likewise, members of our community who are Muslim and/or who are perceived as Muslim reacted to the election with great and understandable foreboding. I have talked today to Bruins who feel that the election results disfavor women of all races, people of color, differently abled people, and/or members of the LGBTQ communities. For those of you who supported Trump—as it was your right to do—I hope you will take notice of the pain that some of your peers and colleagues may feel today and for some time. On the other side, I hope those of us who are deeply disappointed with these election results will keep in mind that we are a diverse community with a variety of political views to which individuals are entitled to hold and to express.
As students and faculty in the Social Sciences Division, moreover, we are uniquely situated to be leaders in conducting an open, respectful and rigorous inquiry into why the election turned out the way it did, what its policy ramifications are, and where we go as a nation in the future. Most obviously, we are home to one of the nation’s best Political Science Departments, and faculty there already are doubtlessly involved in piecing together what occurred. But the election is too important to leave only to the political scientists (to borrow a phrase usually aimed at lawyers). We are home to scholars of the past who can put this year’s election in historical context, to experts who study political communication as a sub-set of communication studies, to sociologists and anthropologists who study politics and political economy, to social geographers who can help us put the electoral map in perspective, and to economists who will analyze the election’s impact on both Main Street and Wall Street. UCLA Social Sciences is also home to four departments and one interdepartmental program that consist of scholars (often with split appointments in other social science departments or other UCLA divisions or colleges) who specifically study how politics and social movements on the basis of gender and race come to be and how they impact society: Gender Studies, Chicana/Chicano Studies, Asian American Studies, African American Studies and American Indian Studies.
Students, undergraduate and graduate, enrolled in courses in all of these departments have the opportunity to engage in dialogue and intellectual inquiry as well as conversations in which they unpack strong emotions about the election and fears about the future. I urge you to take advantage of our unique intellectual community in the days and weeks to come to engage these and other questions as an enactment of our nation’s ongoing civic debate about policy and about the nation we hope to be in the future.
In addition, I close with a link to Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Vice Chancellor Jerry Kang’s CrossCheck Live event titled Processing the Election. It’ll be tomorrow evening, Thursday, November 10, from 5:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. in Royce Hall.
Laura E. Gómez
Interim Dean of Social Sciences
UCLA College of Letters & Science
Message from GSE&IS Leadership
Dear Members of the GSE&IS Community,
Last night marked the end of an unusually noxious political campaign. Taboos were broken, communities were dehumanized, and new levels of rancor and radioactivity invaded the political discourse. While nobody knows what comes after the election, we know that damage has been done.
While it is not our role to weigh in on political matters, it is our responsibility to acknowledge the hurt, frustration and anger, and to redouble our efforts to serve the most vulnerable populations in our communities. GSE&IS is guided by an ethic of social justice, a deep respect for our common humanity, and a dedication to making the world a better place through education.
Albert Camus, the great Algerian novelist, essayist, and winner of the Nobel Prize, once said where there is no hope, “we have to invent it.” In these dystopic times of hurt and division we recommit ourselves to inventing hope. We endeavor to embody an exemplary ethos of civility and solidarity founded upon respect, rigor and reflexivity.
Moving forward we will continue to seek opportunities to engage our communities in gatherings, office hours, and in multiple other ways to listen to each other, to converse, to engage in resisting against all forms of injustice and oppression, to support each other, and to learn from each other. As always, please let us know if you have specific ideas of how we can work together as a community moving forward.
Thank you for all you do.
All the best,
Marcelo Suárez-Orozco, Dean
Tyrone Howard, Associate Dean for Equity & Inclusion
Jody Priselac, Associate Dean for Community Programs
Christina (Tina) Christie, Chair, Department of Education
Jonathan Furner, Chair, Department of Information Studies
Graduate School of Education and Information Studies
Message from Dean Heymann and Director Kagawa
This election period was one of the most divisive events in our country’s recent history.
At the core of public health and public universities is a deep commitment to ensure that we build inclusive communities with respect for the humanity, right to health, and right to education for all. These shared commitments could not be more important, essential, and urgent than they are now.
Today we held an informal lunch for students, who shared their worries for their futures as well as the country’s. We hope that you will join us in supporting them -- and each other – as we all move forward on our collective mission to create a community here at FSPH, across California, the US, and globally where the equality of all is a core value, and the right to health and education become a reality.
I understand that many of you, too, may be worried about new challenges that you will face in your work or in your personal lives as a result of uncertainties arising from the election. We will have lunch and a town hall next Wednesday at noon, to provide a forum for faculty and staff who want to share concerns, questions or ideas with each other.
Please don’t hesitate to let us know how we can help support you and your efforts as we all work for a community and country that truly values the richness of our diversity and works to improve population health and opportunities for all.
Jody and Margie
Jody Heymann, Dean
Margie Kagawa Singer, Director of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion
Fielding School of Public Health
Message from Dean Martin
Today our nation awakened to a new era. Regardless of our political beliefs, the election results have left many in a state of uncertainty. In times like these, it is especially important to focus on the ideals and values that are fundamental to the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. These include a commitment to improve the health and well-being of our entire community, to pursue knowledge through rigorous scientific inquiry, and to educate future generations of clinicians and scientists in an environment that is diverse, inclusive, collegial, and welcoming. Not only do our ideals and values define us as a community, they also define our fundamental commitment to medicine as a humanitarian calling, whether pursued in the lab or the clinic, in which we are deeply dedicated to the care of each and every individual.
Kelsey C. Martin
David Geffen School of Medicine
Message from Dean Mnookin
Dear UCLA Law Community,
So many of us today are feeling the dramatic impact of the election results, and the aftermath of a divisive and painful election season. Regardless of who one supported as our next President, the unexpected outcome also raises significant questions about who we are as Americans and where our country goes from here.
I feel so tremendously fortunate to be surrounded by so many of you who strive to make a positive difference here at UCLA and in your broader communities. Every day and every week, I see members of our community arguing forcefully but respectfully for what they believe in, working to produce meaningful changes both within our community and so far beyond it, and learning from one another in ways both small and large. I am also so proud of the way that I see students, staff, faculty and our alumni embracing inclusion, championing respect and dignity for all, and recognizing that diversity of all kinds is one of our greatest strengths.
I know many of you are tired, frustrated, and anxious about next steps. I am, too. I have been thinking a lot today about how to process this election, and what it means for us as lawyers. As many of you know, I came to UCLA (11 years ago) from UVA Law School. There, inscribed into the stone above the main law building, was one of those lofty exhortative quotes that most days we all just walked by unthinkingly. But I found myself thinking of those words today, written by a law professor back in 1932: “That those alone may be servants of the law who labor with learning, courage, and devotion to preserve liberty and promote justice.”
Laboring with “learning, courage and devotion to preserve liberty and promote justice” is, I truly believe, part of the gift of being trained in the law. And when we’ve had more of a chance to process, we may just see that this election creates an unparalleled opportunity for us to examine issues related to the preservation of liberty and the promotion of justice in the United States, as well as the role we play as members of the legal profession.
This election – and the deep divide that it reveals in our nation – also shows the extraordinary importance of the rule of law. Our system, with its deep commitment to the peaceful transition of power, exemplified by both President Obama and Secretary Clinton today, is fundamentally founded upon a belief in the rule of law. And core to our system of government is also the belief that through law, we can improve our world and help to make “a more perfect union.”
No matter who you voted for, you likely feel today that “We the People” are a vast distance from that dream of a more perfect union. But here at UCLA Law, we invest in our students and embrace the power of the law, because both are vehicles to strengthening liberty and justice. Students, you are our change agents. You inspire us, as faculty, staff and administrators, to labor with courage, learning and devotion as best we can. We are here for you, as you continue to be for us, your families, friends and each other.
I’m in New York City this week for a variety of alumni meetings. I was so sorry not to have been on campus today, but tonight we had a reception for our New York-based alumni, and it was remarkable and heartwarming to see classmates reconnecting with old friends and forging new connections, as people reminisced about law school, talked of their current lives, and processed their own reactions to the election. Those at the reception were certainly not all of one mind, but I do believe everyone benefitted from engaging with one another and left feeling a bit more connection to one another and a bit more hope.
I wish that for each of you as well: connection to one another, hope, and some degree of peace on this Veterans Day weekend.
All the best,
UCLA School of Law
Message from Dean Murthy
Dear UCLA Engineering Community:
Over the last 24 hours, I have received numerous messages from students concerned with the impact this week’s election may have on them. I have responded directly to each of these individuals, but thought I should share the following general information with our entire community in case others had similar questions.
If you are experiencing distress or uncertainty in your personal life, I will point you again to the UCLA Counseling and Psychological Services team, who are prepared to help any student, with any issue. Their phone number is 310.825.0768. That number can be used to schedule a free screening between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, and is staffed 24 hours a day.
Sessions are free to students with SHIP insurance and the initial screening is open to all. The CAPS team will help you determine the best course of action given your individual situation. More information can be found here:
For those of you wondering what the official University of California position is with regard to many of the issues brought up in this year’s presidential campaign, please read the statement from UC President Janet Napolitano, and signed by each UC Chancellor, here:
The message cites UC’s Principles Against Intolerance, reiterating our commitment to “foster an environment in which all are included” and “all are given an equal opportunity to learn and explore.”
Finally, if you are in need of community, the UCLA Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion is hosting an event from 5:00 to 6:30 tonight at Royce Hall. That event will bring together a range of perspectives from across campus to “gather, discuss and digest yesterday’s Presidential election.”
Personally, I would like to encourage each of you to maintain an openness and respect for others’ perspectives in these heated times. My wish is that we all remember the many ways we are similar, honor our differences and commit to building an inclusive environment in which all individuals can learn, contribute and thrive. Only in this way can we truly build a brighter future.
Ronald and Valerie Sugar Dean
UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science
Message from Interim Dean Roussève
School of the Arts and Architecture Community:
Whatever your politics, I believe we can agree that yesterday was a monumental moment for America. As Dean I am neutral on the political outcome of our election. As a citizen and socially engaged artist I certainly feel the need to discuss and process the election and the future we can build together. I sense that many of you are in need of conversation as well.
We have an already planned convening for this afternoon at 5:00. I would like to offer the first 45 minutes as a time for us to come together in open and informal conversation as faculty, staff, and students.
The film we will then premier offers not only a dialogue on our school but a larger dialogue on the role of the arts as a place of innovation, beauty, but also social engagement… three value of immense importance at this moment of transition.
However you ultimately come to define ‘moving forward’ for yourselves - whether full-fledged support, peaceful resistance, questioning, affirmation, or otherwise- conversation is the starting place. I invite you to join us at 5:00 today for a moment of contact, community and informal discussion followed by a viewing of a film that forwards a conversation about the deeply profound role of the arts and architecture in fostering the type of conversation and engagement that are vital to any version of ‘moving forward’.
UCLA School of the Arts and Architecture
Message from Dean Schaberg
As members of the campus community continue to think through the results of Tuesday’s election, I hope that you will consider attending the CrossCheck Live event being held this afternoon (Thursday) at Royce Hall. To my mind, our most important duties right now are to recognize the distress and anxiety that the election results have aroused for many students and others, to offer support where we can, and to reflect with care and courage on the deep differences that we face as a nation. Events like today’s are a beginning.
Dean of the Division of Humanities
UCLA College of Letters & Science
Message from Dean Schwartz
Dear TFT Community,
I wanted to reach out to all of you today post election. No matter your position on things or how you might have voted (or even if you didn't vote), today is a day when emotions and thoughts about our future, both at home and abroad, are running high for so many people.
I have received notes from several people in our TFT community about feeling stress, anxiety, and uncertainty. I want you to know I am concerned for all of you and your well-being. As such, for those of you who may want or need to talk to a professional, here are the offices to contact for counseling for faculty/staff and for our students:
Staff and Faculty Counseling Center
Phone#: (310) 794-0245
Student Counseling Center
Phone#: (310) 825-0768
I encourage you to please be there for each other, as peers, because sometimes just talking to a colleague is helpful if you feel the need to talk.
Also, please make sure our students have this important information if they are feeling undue stress and anxiety today, or in the days ahead.
As a very special community of diverse, humanistic artists and scholars who are focused on the power of story to enlighten, engage and inspire change for better world, we, at UCLA/TFT, are in a unique position to come together in harmony to use our diverse voices, our stories, our performances and our research for the greater good and to build bridges of understanding amongst all people, from all walks of life.
I encourage all of us to be the most collegial, fair-minded, kind, inclusive, generous, positive, and welcoming community not only with and for one another - faculty, staff and students - but with our campus colleagues, visitors, partners, donors, alliances, alumni, families and all with whom we interact. I hope that all of us will stay focused on these ideals for the days, weeks, months and years to come. I know if we do this, we will move forward, together, into a brighter future.
With warmest regards, and with thanks for your unfailing and wonderful service and commitment to our TFT.
UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television
Message from Interim Dean Smith
Dear Members of the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music community,
The election and its aftermath have left many in our UCLA community with feelings of dismay, anger and deep concern. I write to be sure all of you know about the gathering today from 5 to 6:30PM in Royce Hall, which is being sponsored as a special event entitled "Processing the Election”. As stated in Vice Chancellor Jerry Kang’s notice about the meeting, “This event will offer us, as a community, a chance to gather, discuss and digest the Presidential election.”
Also, I have heard from a number of students who are struggling with concerns about their futures. I have attached a PDF that contains two messages, one from Vice Chancellor Kang about the Royce event tonight and a message from Interim Vice Chancellor Monroe Gorden that lists a number of counseling services open to students, as well as staff and faculty. Please help others in need by directing them to appropriate areas for assistance. And faculty, please be aware that many students are very distressed; please be supportive and accommodating in whatever ways you can, especially in terms of adjusting deadlines if at all possible.
Our democracy should foster open debate and dialogue. To my dismay and the disgust of many, we as a nation have too often resorted to anger and ugliness that creates hostility rather than civility and compassion. Let us help each other to come together to build a future with promise for all - a future that embraces diversity and inclusion. Finally, music is a wonderful tool to bring communities together in a reflective and healing environment. Please make an extra effort to attend the performances of our students in the next few weeks. Our encouragement and support means so much.
Judith L. Smith
The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music
Message from University Librarian Steel
Good evening, everyone,
It's now been not quite 24 hours since the announcement of the presidential election results, and I imagine many of you, like me, are still in shock. Regardless of our political beliefs, this was an unexpected outcome and one that has taken us by surprise. There are many unanswered questions about the future, and no one really knows what the coming weeks, months, and years will bring.
As we look to the future and to trying to heal the deep rifts that have become so apparent in our society, I know there will be many questions and concerns about what to do next. We in the UCLA Library have a significant role to play on campus by encouraging civil discourse and debate and by offering safe spaces where these conversations can happen. I applaud all of you for helping create a positive and welcoming environment for the campus community.
If you aren't already aware, I wanted to draw your attention to the event that will be taking place tomorrow afternoon and early evening in Royce Hall. This will offer a tremendous opportunity for us to come together as a community to better understand the election outcomes and what this signals for our future relationships.
If you would like to have more conversation within the Library about the election, please let me know, and if you are feeling uncertain or in any way deeply troubled, please do take advantage of the very helpful resources the campus provides such as the Counseling and Psychological Services Program. This is an unsettling time and one in which we need to pull together and take care of each other.
With great concern for us all and our futures,
University Librarian Virginia Steel
Message from Interim Dean Takahashi
Dear Luskin School Family,
I know that the national election results were surprising to say the least, and to many, quite disappointing and distressing. This is the time for us to help one another to process, heal, and come together to continue the School's important work for social change.
The departments are setting up times for faculty, students, and staff to gather -- please watch for emails about times and places.
In the meantime, I would ask faculty to be aware that many students are very distressed by the national election results; please be supportive and accommodating in whatever ways you can, especially in terms of assignments and exams.
These are challenging times, but we will, as we always do, work together for a just and sustainable world.
UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs