Dear Faculty, Staff, and Students of our Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center
"There comes a time when silence is betrayal. Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends."
-- attributed to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
The recent deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and others of the Black community can no longer be ignored. Now is the time that we must be united in our message: at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC) Black lives matter.
We must stand together to support and uplift our Black and minority communities that have been plagued by systemic racism and oppression for generations. The painful reminders of the injustices that still divide us have become more apparent.
We must condemn any form of discrimination and racism. We must acknowledge that these are not isolated issues, and we must come together as a community to fight these injustices.
We stand together with our TTUHSC team during this difficult time. When one person in our family hurts, we all hurt. The COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately hurt minority communities throughout our nation and in our local community. Now, more than ever, we must show the world that TTUHSC can be a beacon of hope not only for our West Texas community but also for the rest of the nation.
We must demonstrate that we will provide loving, compassionate care for all people, but especially for our minority communities. We must and will do better.
We must be able to create an environment where our Black and minority students’ voices can be intensified and strive to create a community where no voice is left unheard.
We will not be silent:
- We will maintain schools that foster and take care of the most vulnerable in our community.
- We will be proactive in how we teach our students about the health care disparities that afflict our minority communities.
- We will continue to train our students and faculty in implicit bias.
- We will stand in solidarity and be leaders in the fight against injustice and inequality.
- We will have members of our Student Government Association and representatives of our diverse student organizations meet with local community leaders through our Deans’ offices so their voices can be heard without fear of consequence.
As shared in the message by President Lori Rice-Spearman, Ph.D., in our commitment to treating each other constantly with compassion and respect, we will show the world that we are truly a kindhearted family united as one team in this fight for justice, inclusion, and equity.
School of Medicine
Steven Berk, M.D.
Executive Vice President
Felix G. Morales, MD
Associate Dean of Admissions
Lauren Cobbs, M.D., M.Ed., FACP
Associate Dean for Student Affairs
Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences
Brandt Schneider, Ph.D.
Michael Blanton, Ph.D.
Senior Associate Dean
School of Health Professions
Dawndra Sechrist, OTR, Ph.D.
Lindsay R. Johnson, M.Ed.
Associate Dean for Admissions and Student Affairs
School of Nursing
Michael Evans, Ph.D., RN, FAAN
TTUHSC Interim Provost and Chief Academic Officer
Karla J. Chapman, Ph.D.
Associate Dean Admissions, Enrollment Management, Student Affairs
Jerry H. Hodge School of Pharmacy
Quentin Smith, Ph.D.
Thomas Thekkumkara, Ph.D.
Senior Associate Dean of Student Affairs and Admissions
TTUHSC Office of Student Affairs
Erin Justyna, Ph.D.
Dear TTUHSC Community,
On March 16, the occupants of three Asian-owned businesses in Atlanta were violently attacked. Among the eight people who were murdered, six were identified as Asian women. While this event is alarming and heartbreaking, it is far too common in our country. Thousands of hate crimes directed at Asian American Pacific Islanders (AAPI) have been reported since March of last year according to the advocacy group Stop AAPI Hate.
The Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center family denounces such violence, and we offer condolences to all who have encountered this kind of hate. It is at times like these that we must all reflect on and condemn the racism and xenophobia that still persist in some aspects of our lives and our communities.
Now more than ever, it is important that we listen with compassion and understanding, remember what unites us, but also recognize the areas in which we fall short. Through the influence of our institution, we can stand with our different communities and maintain our resolve to be inclusive of and caring to all.
If you ever feel like there is a need for additional support, please be aware of the services and resources available for students, faculty, and staff, including:
- Employee Assistance Program
- Program of Assistance for Students
- TTUHSC Office of Student Life
- TTUHSC Office of Diversity and Inclusion
- TTUHSC Campuses HR Directors
- Report a Bias Incident
In living out our values, we are committed to treating each other consistently with compassion and respect. Let’s use this time to advocate for diversity, equality, and wellness for our entire TTUHSC family. As we know it takes all of us to improve the human condition, both, inside and outside our campus walls.