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A Letter to the State University System Community

The shocking and horrific event of this past week in which George Floyd lost his life in Minneapolis, at the hands of sworn police officers, has both angered and saddened all Americans.  Similar tragic and senseless acts involving African Americans in recent years are particularly painful as there have been far too many other examples of racism and violence against people of color from all across our nation.  It is time for everyone to examine the inequities in our society, recognize the conditions that have created those inequities, and work to repair the racial divide and restore equal justice for all Americans.

The State University System of Florida respects and appreciates all races, diverse cultures, nationalities, and communities and is committed to addressing ongoing societal problems and enhancing diversity and inclusion. 

Everyone in the University Community condemns the deplorable act that caused the death of George Floyd. Our anger, sadness, and frustration over Mr. Floyd’s death, however, must give us resolve to take action.  As a powerful and influential voice in Florida, it is time for the State University System, including students, faculty, staff, and alumni, to actively engage in finding solutions to peacefully eliminate racism and discrimination.  This will be a critical mission of our twelve state universities, as it is our duty as societal leaders to help end prejudice and to promote social justice for all. 

Our universities will draw upon the wisdom and leadership of our students, faculty, and staff to strengthen our campus communities and our State.  Together, we must move forward with greater resolve to battle racism and systemic inequities wherever they exist.

Please take care of yourselves, your families, and your communities during this difficult time.


Sydney Kitson, Chair | Board of Governors

Brian Lamb, Vice Chair | Board of Governors

Marshall M. Criser III, Chancellor | Board of Governors