CHS Safe and Smart Restart: we are committed to providing an exceptional educational experience while safeguarding the health of our community.

Moving forward toward a just, safe, and equitable campus for all

June 15, 2020

On Friday, I shared my thoughts with faculty and staff about how we will move forward to create a safe, just, and equitable campus at the College of Health Sciences. Loss of human rights for one is a loss for all. Our next steps will be thoughtful and purposeful as we work to enact meaningful change at CHS.

It is my hope the actions we take will not be confined to our buildings and classrooms — they should also be carried out by all members of our community in minds, hearts, and homes. To do this, we must acknowledge we have been part of the problem whether voluntarily or involuntarily. Now, it’s time for all of us to become the solution.

Our tactics to confront this enemy must be both sustainable and systemic. Therefore, we are implementing the following actions immediately:

  • We will continue this commitment and find ways to create safe space and means through which our faculty, staff, and students can build community, connections, understanding, and have important and necessary conversations. 
  • We will increase our communications and outreach to students and colleagues through regular updates, open virtual forums, and conversations to mitigate isolation and re-build our connections as we prepare for the fall.
  • We will work to better understand, listen, and learn from each other so our college can make decisive and compassionate changes that lead toward greater inclusivity and transform our CHS community. 
  • We will empower a standing committee to be thought leaders to give us direction, redirect our course when needed, and assess the effectiveness of our actions.
  • We are establishing a $100,000 Fund for the Advancement of Justice, Equity, and Inclusivity in the College of Health Sciences.

I will share more details in the coming days and weeks as we plan to reinvent normal for our campus this fall. We are one community, and everything we do must reflect this promise.

Sincerely,

Scott Lephart
Dean of the UK College of Health Sciences

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