Dear Students, Faculty, and Staff:
Many of you have communicated with me or with other members of the administration regarding the scheduling of an event in the Pavilion on Friday, March 11 by the Trump campaign. Consistent with its role as a public university, the University of Illinois at Chicago is not endorsing, sponsoring or supporting any candidate for political office. At the same time, it has been our standard practice for decades to rent available space on campus to any political candidate when requested. As a result, we have a long history of campaign events on campus, and no legal basis to exclude any candidate because of the views he or she expresses.
UIC’s core values of freedom, equality and social justice for all, regardless of race, religion, national origin, disability status or sexual orientation, are deeply rooted in our diverse community and not endangered by the presence of any political candidate on campus. We encourage public and civic engagement by all members of our University and we endorse the idea that the answer to speech that one does not like or finds offensive is more speech and not censorship.
We welcome the diverse sentiments expressed by our students, faculty, staff, alumni and the neighboring communities regarding the upcoming political event. And we want to ensure everyone that security plans are in place to address the safety of our campus community during this event.
Michael D. Amiridis
*updated March 7, 2016