November 6, 2020
Dear Colleagues and Students,
Based on major media outlets, the presidential election has been called in favor of Joe Biden. Depending on the state, election results will be certified within the next few weeks. These results will not change our wish that the future of our nation is one where coalitions and bipartisan cooperation lead to progress. We need to join hands with one another, especially now, heed the advice of scientists and other experts, and chart a pathway forward for our country.
This election season has been challenging on many fronts, but what rises to the top for me is the inspiring way our campus has addressed these challenges. Regardless of the circumstances we face on campus, we remain dedicated to our fundamental mission: to advance the state of Indiana and the intellectual growth of its residents through research and creative activity, teaching and learning, and civic engagement.
As we have approached the national election—even in the midst of a pandemic—our students remain among the most civically engaged in the country. Our faculty and staff are creating opportunities for civil and respectful dialogue to share information and generate a better understanding of our democratic processes. Our campus community has what it takes—knowledge and engagement—to ensure the health of our democracy.
At the same time, we also need to take care of ourselves, especially if you are like me and have been plugged into what has become a perpetual election news cycle. If you need support as you work through the stress and anxiety you may be feeling, I encourage you to reach out and access the different forms of help available. Now more than ever, we need to support each other and get through this together.
As a campus, we remain unwavering in our determination to ensure that we offer a welcoming, safe, civil, and inclusive environment for faculty, staff, and students. Open dialogue is part of our culture, central to academic freedom and to our educational mission. Though we may disagree, mutual respect and civility must guide the conversation and our interactions with one another.
As the season of thanksgiving draws near, I also wish to extend my gratitude to members of the campus community. You reflect our campus's core values of diversity and inclusion, civility and respect, engagement and service. Your dedication to student success, to academic achievement, and to transforming our world through research and creative activity has been and will always be an inspiration to me.
Nasser H. Paydar