Following the email President Robert J. Zimmer and Provost Eric D. Isaacs sent to the campus community last week (below), Karen Warren Coleman, Vice President for Campus Life and Student Services emailed the campus community with this update. Campus and Student Life also has posted an FAQ with additional information related to the incident.
To: The campus community
From: Karen Warren Coleman, Vice President for Campus Life and Student Services
Subject: Update on Facebook incident
Date: November 24, 2014
Last week President Zimmer and Provost Isaacs wrote to the campus community about an unusually alarming and hateful threat that appeared on a student’s Facebook page. The University takes any such expression of hate very seriously, and we continue to pursue the facts of the case. Based on our ongoing investigation we now are confident that the Facebook posting was not created by a hacker.
That conclusion does not erase the seriousness of this episode, the harm it has caused to individuals and our broader community, or the consequences for those responsible. Whatever its purpose, the language used in this incident does not constitute discourse and will not be tolerated. Its use underlines questions about campus climate already raised in other contexts. These emerging facts do not in any way diminish the University’s commitment to a diverse campus, free from harassment and discrimination, as articulated by the president and provost in their message.
This turn of events may be upsetting to members of our community for a variety of reasons. Students, faculty, or staff who wish to gather to talk about these incidents and get support should check csl.uchicago.edu for information on special sessions we will host today and in the days ahead. Later you will hear more about our ongoing efforts, as we consult with students, faculty, and staff members to address larger issues of campus climate and provide effective venues for continued discussion.