The events of the last week have shaken the core of our community. The death of Mr. George Floyd reopened wounds which led people to assemble to seek healing, answers, and solutions. Unfortunately, some of those assemblies became violent protests which swept across the nation, including Aurora. 

In this difficult time, though, it is critical to remember that our community's core is strong. The leaders and the residents of Aurora and all of our communities have the resilience to work through this difficult period. We've seen it over the last several weeks as we have worked together to flatten the curve of the coronavirus. We will see it again as we grapple with the issues that led to these protests and work together toward lasting change. 

At Waubonsee, we welcome diversity. We celebrate it. We are better because of it. We understand we have a responsibility to provide a safe and welcoming environment for everyone. We will not accept hatred, intolerance or racism at any level. Diversity, equity, and fairness are part of the fabric of Waubonsee because we know that for learning to happen everyone in the learning community must feel safe and welcome.

For many people, this is a time of hurt, sadness, and anger. Having worked with so many people for so many years to rebuild downtown Aurora, it was heartbreaking to see the violence. So what can we do? Each and every day, we can learn together and listen to each other in hopes of creating stronger connections and achieving greater understanding. We need the healing, answers, and solutions that people peacefully assemble for. We can get all of those things by listening and learning together.

In the days and months ahead, we wish for peace and the safety of all, as we work on renewed efforts to create even stronger communities that echo the vision set out for Waubonsee's campuses — to welcome, respect, and appreciate the diverse abilities, goals, and experiences of all individuals. Because Waubonsee is more than college. We are our community's college.