Campus Message 01.15.16

Dear Students, Faculty and Staff,

On Monday, January 18, the University will be closed in observance of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. holiday. The day provides not only an opportunity for our community to be engaged in service activities across the Chicago region, but also to reflect on what makes UIC unique. The values that Dr. King expressed so passionately 50 years ago; the values to which so many in the United States and the world have dedicated their lives, are the same values of freedom, equity, and social justice on which our University has been built. Our work and our policies reflect these values today, and for over 50 years we have increasingly made access to the highest quality education and a commitment to diversity fundamental components of our mission.

We are proud of the work we have done to create a living and learning community of students, faculty and staff in which dozens of languages are spoken at any given time, and where a vast variety of religions and ethnicities learn from each other. This is a tribute to Dr. King’s legacy. Our steadfast commitment to social justice has made UIC a leader in graduating students from every walk of life, and in providing solutions to some of the most complex social problems of our times.

Our work is not nearly finished. We must continue to be inspired by Dr. King’s example. We must reinforce our efforts to recruit and retain more African American students and faculty to truly reflect Chicago, our home city. We must continue striving to advance underserved communities in many different ways. And we must make even greater efforts to elevate the circumstances for all.

We will stretch the limits of our imaginations when we run up against challenges, and we will live up to our vision statement as we continue to “embody the ideal of a public university: to cultivate the highest intellectual ambitions of faculty, students and staff and, at the same time, contribute to the making of a more egalitarian society.”

As we honor the memory and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. please think about the opportunities around you. Now is the time to reflect on the ways in which Dr. King’s efforts laid the path that we need to follow as we move his work forward and realize his, and our, dream.

Thank you.

Michael D. Amiridis