A Special Message from President Avery
Discourse, Division and Education
Many in our community watched with intense feelings of sorrow, anger and even fear as the riots at the United States Capitol (and in our own Capitol) unfolded recently, and you may have experienced those same emotions yourself. I know that I did.
The violence and lawlessness that we witnessed is an affront to the values of our country, and to the values of our institution. Just as both political parties condemned these brutal actions, I want to add my voice. In the Lyceum Address, Abraham Lincoln reminded Americans that “there is no grievance that is a fit object of redress by mob law,” and those words remain relevant today. Likewise, there is no place for violence and hate at LBCC -- and it is our responsibility as an educational community to speak out against it. It is also our responsibility to model the tenets of civil discourse in our classrooms and in our offices, and it is our great charge to rise above hatred and division and thoughtfully engage with those we disagree.
That is why the work we do at LBCC matters so much. It is why every single student, employee, and community member who supports our mission has a critical role to play. Through education, we actively empower each other to think critically, promote empathy, and make contributions that protect and encourage the worth and dignity of ALL people, even if we wildly disagree. The recent chaos was deeply troubling, but I want to encourage you now. Regardless of your role, the work you do with LBCC has the power to change the world.
As a reminder, if you are experiencing extreme stress or anxiety, LBCC resources are available. Whether you are a student, an employee or a community member, I encourage you to visit our website and speak with our office contacts to receive formal assistance. Please engage in the self-care you need to continue to bring your best to our community.
In closing, please join me in remembering how much hope we have in our midst -- our students are a testament to that, and their education is central to our community’s well-being. Lincoln also opined, “upon the subject of education . . . . I can only say that I view it as the most important subject which we as a people can be engaged in.” I wholeheartedly agree, and today, I want to thank you for continuing to support LBCC’s educational mission.
Lisa Avery, Ph.D.