Message from UMIACS Director Regarding #ShoutDownAcademia, #ShutDownSTEM and #Strike4BlackLives

Jun 10, 2020

These past several weeks have highlighted the tremendous inequities that exist in this country.

Today, many scientists are calling for all of us to #ShoutDownAcademia, #ShutDownSTEM, and to #Strike4BlackLives. They are asking us to stop doing business as usual and focus our thoughts and actions on changing the status quo.

As academics, we have a privileged and powerful role as amplifiers of knowledge. Let’s use our power to amplify justice as well, irrespective of what our academic field may be. We all bear responsibility for a better future.

As educators, we can teach equity and justice alongside our scientific subject, and model to our students the ethical and responsible conduct of research.

As researchers, we can prioritize fairness and positive societal impact.

As co-workers, we can support and mentor each other, and enact equitable policies and practices for the hiring and evaluation of our colleagues and students. Furthermore, we can all speak up when we observe an injustice taking place, and step up to support those who are less privileged than us.

I encourage you all to reflect today on the role you can play to improve our world, starting here, on our campus. In the coming days and months I look forward to working alongside you to enact lasting change.

Mihai Pop, UMIACS Director