Good morning, Mizzou family:

As you know, a few individuals have tried to harass and intimidate our students using racial slurs over the past few weeks. During the most recent incident, our students took quick action, contacted MUPD and talked with our police officer, which led directly to MUPD identifying the individual responsible.

As a community, we must live by our values of Respect, Responsibility, Discovery and Excellence. That includes respecting the differences we all bring to the Mizzou community. Today, I am announcing that we will be developing diversity and inclusion training for all faculty, staff and students.

STUDENTS: Beginning this coming spring semester, January 2016, all first-time, incoming students admitted to Mizzou will be required to complete a training program that addresses the issue of racism at Mizzou, informs them of our campus’ many diverse organizations and resources, and emphasizes each student’s responsibility to be inclusive while at the university. Students will be ineligible to enroll in classes without successfully completing this training.

FACULTY AND STAFF: Training for all faculty and staff will be required and put in place as soon as possible in order to create awareness of — and to address — conscious and unconscious discrimination toward each other and our students. This training will inform all of us about the diversity of our campus and the organizations present on campus and make us conscious of how to be inclusive in our words and behaviors.

We will be working with faculty council, staff council and academic leaders, including deans and department chairs, to develop the training and an expanded toolkit for faculty and staff.

This requirement is in addition to the actions announced earlier this week.  These include:

  • Vice Chancellor for Inclusion, Diversity and Equity: Provost Stokes is leading a national search for this new position. We are searching for the best person who can understand the challenges we face and help us move toward a better future.
  • Diversity training for job searches: Every person who is responsible for hiring faculty and staff on this campus will be required to complete training to ensure that we are fully considering diversity when we recruit for positions on campus. We know that we have a disproportionately low number of faculty and staff from under-represented groups. We want to change that.
  • Campus Climate Survey: We will ask everyone to participate in a campus climate survey related to race issues on campus.

We must all do our part to make Mizzou a welcoming community for every faculty, staff, student and visitor on campus. As we celebrate Homecoming, please be respectful and honor all of our traditions. We are proud of every single member of our student body and every alumnus whom we have been honored to call a Tiger.

Thank you for joining me in helping eradicate racism from our campus.


R. Bowen Loftin