Dear Members of the Barnard Community,

As the fall semester picks up momentum, I want to offer a warm welcome and a brief introduction to those of you who are new to the College, as well as extend an invitation to all of you.

The Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion is devoted, in part, to helping the students among you engage deeply in your learning, with the full support of the College, as you develop the tools necessary to shape a just and equitable society. More broadly, my office seeks to cultivate a climate and community where we all belong and are accountable to one another, so that everyone can grow and thrive.

Those aims, grounded deeply in Barnard’s mission, sound lofty — even daunting. But this is not work that a person, or even an office, takes on in isolation. This work belongs to all of us, together. Opportunities arise every day, from all parts of the College, on a breathtaking array of DEI topics and initiatives to further our learning and efforts.

Just in the last month, the Center for Engaged Pedagogy held an anti-oppressive pedagogy workshop that focused on anti-racist, trans inclusive, and trauma informed approaches to teaching for new Barnard faculty; the Office of Community Engagement & Inclusion and the Sloate Media Center co-hosted a Constitution Day film screening focused on the relationship between women and the constitution; and the Columbia/Barnard Sign Language Club (DEI grant recipients) led a “Barnard Signs the Way” celebration, featuring workshops, panels, films, and exhibitions, by and for Deaf advocates and artists.

I invite each of you to join these many events that help us to learn, to grow in our work, and to appreciate one another. Here’s a sampling of a few upcoming opportunities from our office:

More to come to support an inclusive Barnard community that works to dismantle racism and oppression, including anti-ablism, anti-Asian hate, anit-Blackness, anit-Mulsim racism, anti-Semitism, transphobia and other forms of hate.

This all gives me hope, even at a time when so much around us can seem bleak or overwhelming. The challenges we face are real, and the road we are on is long. But I have seen the generosity that members of the Barnard community give to one another, when we need it most, and I have seen the real differences so many of you have made on this campus. Let’s carry that hope and generous spirit with us through this year, and out into the world around us.

With gratitude,

Jennifer Rosales
Vice President for Inclusion and Engaged Learning, and Chief Diversity Officer