President's Updates

Thank you for your extraordinary effort

06/22/2020 • This past Saturday’s commencement was like none other. While we are immensely proud of all our graduates and were pleased to be able to offer a meaningful ceremony, albeit remote, we know we are all looking forward to the day when we can get back to in-person activities—both on and off-campus. And as we continue our planning for an eventual return, we wanted to take a moment to thank you for all your work, energy, creativity, and dedication to our students through this very difficult time.

Supporting DACA and our Dreamers

06/18/2020 • I am grateful the U.S. Supreme Court blocked efforts to shut down the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, an initiative that has helped countless young immigrants in Oregon and across our nation. At a time when the University of Oregon, our state, and country are painfully grappling with disparities in access to opportunity caused by historic and systemic racism, we need sensible and humane programs like DACA now more than ever.

Looking forward to fall term

06/17/2020 • This has been quite a term! For many, many reasons, it wasn’t easy, but you made it. I am profoundly proud of each one of you for the way you responded in the face of unprecedented adversity and a rapidly changing and uncertain world. For those who are not graduating this weekend, we are excited about welcoming you back in Eugene in the fall.

Pioneer statues and moving forward

06/15/2020 • There is no question we are living in a moment when our nation is painfully coming to grips with the reality of systemic racism that has been woven into the fabric of our society for generations. Racism exists despite the bloody battles of the Civil War, despite protections guaranteed by the Fourteenth and Fifteenth amendments, despite the hard-fought victories of the Civil Rights movement, and despite more recent efforts of individuals and institutions to consciously promote diversity and inclusion.

Deady Hall Denaming

06/10/2020 • The recent, tragic death of George Floyd at the hands of white policemen, coming soon after a spate of other senseless murders of black men and women, has refocused our attention on the racism that affects our black community. Racial disparities touch virtually all aspects of American life, from infant mortality rates, access to health care, residential and educational opportunities, incarceration rates, employment, and life expectancy.

Speaking out against hatred, racism and violence

05/29/2020 • As leaders of this university it is important to speak out against these and other less publicized atrocities inflicted against people of color in our nation. We call on our entire university community and nation to recognize that these are not isolated events, but instead reflect a society deeply in need of transformation and healing.

Supporting your mental health at the UO

05/28/2020 • I wanted to take a moment in honor of Mental Health Awareness Month to both acknowledge the stress and anxiety you have experienced due to the coronavirus and share a number of resources available to you throughout your time as UO students.

New task force will tackle long-term response to COVID-19

05/14/2020 • We all recognize the profound impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on both the University of Oregon and the national higher education landscape. The simple truth is that the coronavirus is an invisible disruptor that suddenly and harshly threatened what has been the UO’s foundation for nearly 150 years—the ability to fulfill our mission of excellent teaching, research, and service as a residential campus.

Looking ahead to fall term on campus

04/27/2020 • Let me begin by observing that our community’s immediate response to the COVID-19 crisis was inspiring. I want to sincerely thank all of you—faculty, staff, administrators, GEs, and students—who are working tirelessly to keep our community strong and deliver on our mission of teaching, discovery, and service during this extraordinarily difficult time. It has truly been awe-inspiring and humbling. Now we must turn our attention to the future, to think about the next school year and beyond.

Addressing our financial challenges

04/13/2020 • We are all facing uncertainty and unprecedented challenges as we work collectively to slow the spread of COVID-19. I am deeply thankful and proud of the way each of you has responded to our rapid shift in operations, while juggling your own personal challenges, to meet our vital mission of teaching, research, and service.