Statement from Members of the Faculty and Staff at Harvey Mudd College

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

January 16, 2017

On April 16, 1963, Martin Luther King, Jr. wrote a letter to his fellow clergymen from a Birmingham jail cell. Asked to respond to whether he, a so-called “outside agitator,” had any business protesting the laws and practices in someone else’s town, he responded, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality.”

Dr. King’s words are particularly salient today, after this divisive campaign and before the inauguration of the 45th President of the United States, when a subset of Americans feels emboldened to increase their violence and discrimination against minoritized people. Many members of the incoming administration have pledged to undermine public education, environmental protections, climate science, civil rights, women’s rights, and human rights at home and abroad.

Therefore, on this Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, the members of the Faculty Executive Committee of Harvey Mudd College and our undersigned colleagues, re-affirm Dr. King’s words. We stand opposed to those who would make strangers of our neighbors, aliens out of immigrants, and pariahs out of those whose race, gender, sexuality, religion, or ethnicity differs from their own. We stand against injustice, whether institutional or individual. We believe that the mission statement of our college calls us to understand and engage with our interconnected world, guided by our expertise and the principles of inclusiveness, equity, and excellence, to which we as a community aspire. Furthermore:

We believe in science. We believe that the foundation of our future is scientific knowledge. Our ability to address pressing problems and exciting possibilities, such as energy security, food security, global climate change, economic development, sustainable resource management, cure for disease, and space exploration, is contingent on progress in scientific research and a strong program of STEM education from kindergarten to college. We will continue to oppose those movements and actions which threaten to strangle science education in our public schools, to pass off pseudo-science as science, or to de-fund crucial federal sources of support for scientific research and development.

We believe in liberal arts education. The liberal arts prepare students to think creatively; to grapple with consequential ideas and complex histories; to know themselves; to engage others with civility, clarity, and context; to produce art and to provoke change; and to act compassionately, intelligently, and courageously in the face of the sacrifices and compromises that life and the world demand.

We believe in the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, which reads:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

We affirm the principle of freedom of conscience, around which these rights coalesce. Therefore, we oppose all attempts to abridge conscience or freedom of religion, to suppress protest, or to circumscribe the manner or ability of our community members to express their values, beliefs, or convictions.

We believe in equality; we reject bigotry and discrimination, whether based on race, gender, religion, sexuality, class, nationality, citizenship status, cognitive ability, physical ability, political affiliation, or any other form of identity. We recognize that not all people experience bigotry and discrimination equally and that those people who have interpreted the president-elect’s victory as license to terrorize and bully others are not the authors of prejudice, but merely the latest examples of it. Hate speech and acts have no place at HMC. We will not stand for it, and we will speak and act to prevent it.

We believe in dignity and respect. It is unacceptable to demean women, sexually assault anyone, ridicule or promote violence against any group of people, gaslight those who challenge your ideas, racially-profile, religiously-profile, or attempt to deprive anyone of their freedom and rights because you do not like them. The many disparaging statements made by president-elect Trump during the 2016 campaign -- about women, minorities, veterans, disabled Americans, immigrants, and others whom he found it politically expedient to belittle -- are abhorrent and wrong.

We believe in equity. We recognize that many of the barriers to equal opportunities for education, compensation, professional development, healthcare, and leadership are not only institutional, but social and cultural. Effecting change in these areas takes time, collaboration, and work.

We believe in hard work. Understanding the world, in all its complexities, is hard. Building a just world, where people benefit rather than suffer from scientific advances, is hard. The current political climate makes it even harder. We know that to do this hard work, many of us will need to become uncomfortable: we might have to change our priorities, at times we might have to be more vocal and more active, at other times we will need to listen more and speak less. We will need to recognize the ways that we may be complicit in perpetuating inequities in our own institution. We understand that we have work to do on our campus to live up to the ideals of our mission. We commit ourselves to recognize those areas in which we are failing and to better embody our values.

We believe in our students, staff, alumni, trustees, and fellow faculty members. We are proud of our community, and we love that we get to know you and work with you. To each of you, we say: you matter. We will listen to you. We will work on your behalf. We will support your work and protect your freedom to do it.

Patrick Little, Johnson Professor of Engineering Management, Chair of the Faculty

Stephen C. Adolph, Stuart Mudd Professor and Chair of Biology

Angie Covarrubias Aguilar, Program Director, Upward Bound

Anna Ahn, Associate Professor of Biology

Mark Ashley, Registrar & Assistant Vice President for Student Information Management

Hal S. Barron, Louisa and Robert Miller Professor of Humanities and Professor of History

Lori Bassman, Professor of Engineering, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs

Tad Beckman, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy

Andrew J. Bernoff, Professor of Mathematics

Jim Boerkoel, Assistant Professor of Computer Science

Thyra Briggs, Vice President and Dean of Admission and Financial Aid

Anthony Bright, John Leland Atwood Professor of Engineering Science

Mary Cardenas, Associate Professor of Engineering

Alfonso Castro, Professor of Mathematics

Ambereen Dadabhoy, Visiting Assistant Professor of Literature

G. William Daub, Seeley Wintersmith Mudd Professor of Chemistry

Marianne de Laet, Associate Professor of Anthropology and Science, Technology, and Society

L.G. de Pillis, Norman F. Sprague Professor of Life Sciences, Professor of Mathematics, Department Chair

Eric Ditwiler, Director of Academic Operations, Member Faculty Executive Committee

Zachary Dodds, Professor of Computer Science

Matina Donaldson-Matasci, Assistant Professor of Biology

Tom Donnelly, Professor of Physics

Whitney Duim, Visiting Assistant Professor of Chemistry, HMC '05

Erika Dyson, Associate Professor of Religious Studies, Member Faculty Executive Committee

Ann Esin, Associate Professor of Physics

Jason Gallicchio, Assistant Professor of Physics

Gabriela Gamiz, Director, Community Engagement

Sharon Gerbode, Assistant Professor of Physics

Kash Gokli, Professor of Manufacturing Practice, Director of Engineering Clinic

Jeff Groves, Professor of Literature and Dean of the Faculty

Vivien Hamilton, Assistant Professor of History of Science

David Money Harris, Harvey S. Mudd Professor of Design

Richard Haskell, Professor of Physics

Karl Haushalter, Associate Professor of Chemistry and Biology, Associate Dean of Research and Experiential Learning

Lelia Hawkins, Assistant Prof of Chemistry

Thomas Helliwell, Professor Emeritus of Physics

Jon Jacobsen, Professor of Mathematics, Dean of Students, Member Faculty Executive Committee

Adam Johnson, Professor of Chemistry

Lisa Kaczmarczyk, Adjunct Professor of Computer Science

Dagan Karp, Associate Dean for Diversity, Associate Department Chair, Associate Professor of Mathematics

Robert M. Keller, Professor of Computer Science

Lauren Kim, Associate Registrar/International Student Advisor

Henry A. Krieger, Professor of Mathematics (Emeritus)

Nancy Lape, Associate Professor of Engineering, Associate Department Chair, Member Faculty Executive Committee

Angie Lee, Visiting Assistant Professor of Engineering

Rachel Levy, Professor of Mathematics, Associate Dean for Faculty Development

Colleen Lewis, Assistant Professor of Computer Science

Ran Libeskind-Hadas, R. Michael Shanahan Professor of Computer Science

Sue Lindley, EDP Administrator, Department of Engineering

Gilma Lopez, Director of Financial Aid

Theresa Lynn, Associate Professor of Physics, Department Chair

Gregory A. Lyzenga, Professor of Physics

Susan Martonosi, Associate Professor of Mathematics, Member Faculty Executive Committee

Rachel Mayeri, Professor of Media Studies

Catherine S. McFadden, Vivian and D. Kenneth Baker Professor of Biology

Julie Medero, Assistant Professor of Computer Science

Wendy Menefee-Libey, Director of Learning Programs

Barry C. Olsan, Director, Corporate Relations

Richard Olson, Professor of History emeritus

Melissa O’Neill, Professor of Computer Science, Department Chair

Elizabeth J. Orwin '95, James Howard Kindelberger Professor of Engineering , Department Chair

Michael Palmer, Curator, Bates and Harvey Mudd Aeronautics Heritage Library

Laura Palucki Blake, Director of Institutional Research and Effectiveness

Sumun L. Pendakur, Associate Dean for Institutional Diversity

Nicholas Pippenger, Professor of Mathematics

Peter Saeta, Professor of Physics

Vatche Sahakian, Associate Professor of Physics

Shailee Samar, ASHMC President, Member Faculty Executive Committee

Danae Schulz, Assistant Professor of Biology

Matthew Spencer, Assistant Professor of Engineering

Tanja Srebotnjak, Hixon Associate Professor of Sustainable Environmental Design

Paul Steinberg, Professor of Political Science and Environmental Policy

Daniel Stoebel, Associate Professor of Biology

Francis Su, Professor of Mathematics

Lisa Sullivan, Professor of Economic History

Michael C. Storrie-Lombardi, M.D. (Ret.) , Adjunct Associate Professor, Department of Physics

DruAnn Thomas, Clinic Coordinator

TJ Tsai, Assistant Professor of Engineering

Katherine Van Heuvelen, Assistant Professor of Chemistry

Joseph Vaughan, Vice President/Chief Information Officer

Nabel Villafaña, Assistant Registrar

David Vosburg, Associate Professor of Chemistry, Member Faculty Executive Committee

Ben Wiedermann, Assistant Professor of Computer Science, Member Faculty Executive Committee

Talithia Williams, Associate Professor of Mathematics

Yi-Chieh Wu, Assistant Professor of Computer Science

Qimin Yang, Professor of Engineering

Darryl Yong, Professor of Mathematics

Werner Zorman, Walter and Leonore Annenberg Chair in Leadership