Roughly a year ago I launched CrossCheck, an online platform I’ve used to change the way we think and talk about equity, diversity and inclusion in the University. My number one goal has been to encourage all of us to “up our game” with respect to our discourse about equity, diversity and inclusion and to insist that we go beyond soundbites, caricatures and slogans. This year I am excited to launch CrossCheck Live. Same CrossCheck commitments—but “live.” This new format will allow us to tap into and dialogue with UCLA’s extraordinary pool of talent, including you.
The Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion and the Office of Student Affairs have organized three events during the week of October 16 that will enable UCLA students, staff, faculty, alumni, community members, and friends of the University to listen to, reflect on, and express diverse perspectives and opinions about free speech and its role in the life of our democracy—and the life of UCLA. We look forward to and welcome your presence and participation.
It’s almost impossible to stop thinking about what we just witnessed in Charlottesville, Virginia, where White nationalists marched in favor of White supremacy. The responses from local city officials, University administrators, state politicians, all the way up to the President were in some sense predictable—both good and bad. And universities beyond Virginia, all around the country, are now wondering about what to say, whether to say it, to whom, and how. Debilitating our analysis is a confused commitment to “neutrality,” which has legal, political, and pedagogical dimensions.
On February 28, the University of California released systemwide records of Title IX investigations conducted between January 2013 and April 2016. Although names were generally redacted to protect the identities of complainants and witnesses, the full investigation reports were provided and are circulating online.
An investigation report completed by UCLA’s Discrimination Prevention Office has leaked to the Daily Bruin and was today produced under a public records request. It’s about a hot button issue: divestment from Israel. For multiple reasons, I’m wary about commenting on a report that we did not publicly release. But misunderstandings are spreading. And if this past year as Vice Chancellor has taught me anything, it is to embrace transparency and to meet challenges head-on.