Dear President Lyons,
Dear President Lyons,
It has come to my attention that USD will be hosting several LGBT friendly events this month and that there has been an unfortunate backlash against this. Having attended USD, I am forever grateful to the University and to the Catholic community at Founders Chapel for inspiring me, for directing me in my faith and for giving me the freedom to question, learn and experience new ideas, cultures and people. I would like to thank you, President Lyons, for the work you do, not only with these events, in supporting an inclusive community that upholds the Catholic traditions of universality and love. Jesus loved purely, truly and without limits and I am pleased and thankful to see USD striving to create this environment of love and inclusion rather than one of distrust and exclusion. I hope to hear more news of this tradition continuing not only on our campus but across the country.
May God be with you,
I am writing as an alumnus to thank you for your support of making USD a safe and inclusive environment for all it's students. I am aware of the negative feedback the University has received from some alumni about on-campus programming that is LGBT-friendly. While they are entitled to their opinion, I would like you to know that this Torero is very pleased to see my alma mater take these steps. I only wish they had happened while I was a student on campus.
Under your leadership, the University has made significant advancements on numerous fronts. All of them make me proud to have attended USD, but none make me as proud as the steps taken to make the campus more welcoming to students of color and those who are LGBT. I hope you will continue this work and know that many of us stand with you in full support.
As an alum of USD Class of 2010, I appreciate the way in which you worked to make USD an inclusive and welcoming place for all sorts of people. I am now a first year law student at UCLA, and my classes here have shown me that the importance of exposure to diverse people cannot be understated. Thank you for holding strong in the face of criticism.
The fact that USD is a Catholic school that truly lives Christ's message of showing love and kindness to everyone--no matter their race, religion, socio-economic status, or sexual orientation--was the reason I chose to go there. I loved that the university was supportive and welcoming of my LGBT colleagues and friends. That is was makes USD a nurturing community that fosters the best education and instills the most meaningful values.
continue to build an inclusive and diverse environment on USD's campus.
That is the foundation that USD graduates need to grow into the best
citizens, workers, and community members.
I would like to express my sincere gratitude as a senior and upcoming Alumni of USD for supporting PRIDE and the events that are taking place. This support is what makes USD an inclusive place for every member of the USD community.
Dear President Lyons,
I am a USD alum, class of 2006, and was recently made aware of some of the negative reactions to the University's decision to host a series of educational events relating to LGBT issues. I am saddened by the aggressive and hateful reactions that have been voiced by some members of our community, and would like to thank Associated Students and PRIDE, and commend USD for sponsoring diverse events and educational opportunities even when they are controversial. I am proud to see USD become an ever-more inclusive community, and hope that you will continue to give a voice to any and all students seeking to create a forum for dialogue on any issues, particularly when those issues are tied to questions of human dignity and social justice.
Thank you for putting into action the university's stated mission and vision to create a diverse and inclusive community.
Alumna Class of 2006
Thank you for continuing to stand in support of your students. I am sure that the stones cast by those in their own insecurities and closed-mindedness are hard to bare. Please know that myself, and many of my fellow alumni who I have discussed this with, support the protection and inclusion of all students. Perhaps with continued education and support, future alumni will continue your example of displaying the good Christian values of love, inclusiveness, and non-judgement.
Thank you for continuing to support and encourage acceptance of all peoples on campus, regardless of race, ethnicity, faith, gender, or sexual orientation. As an alumna of the University of San Diego and member of F.U.S.O., A.S., the United Front, various crews for SEARCH and more, and I am happy to see continued progress in the range of events offered for students, and more recently, the workshop and Drag Show sponsored by PRIDE.
I am a Catholic, a Heterosexual, and a friend and ally of PRIDE. I applaud the USD community for providing opportunities for Toreros to learn, grow and love our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, just as He loved us. And through my time at USD, through my Catholic foundation, I've learned to continue to love and pray for all, even those filled with hate and judgement in their hearts.
On this Easter Sunday, we are reminded that God sent His only son to die for us to show His unconditional love for ALL His people. May blessings to you during this Easter holiday.
USD c/o 2006
Filipino Ugnayan Student Organization
United Front Multicultural Center
Orientation (O-Board '04-'05; O-Team '03-'04)
University Ministry (Eucharistic Minister '02-'06; Liturgical Minister '02-'06)
Lambda Pi Eta
Communication Honor Society ('05-'06)
I am both saddened and enthused to write the below on what I believe to be the holiest of days.
Saddened that we are struck with such a frustrating reality nearly two millennia after Jesus' teachings of love, equality, reverence and respect for all people. And we do find ourselves amid a frustrating reality, no matter how out of place or senseless it may seem – even in an era, a society that has done so much to adhere to said wisdom.
At the same time, I am enthused – enthused to offer my thanks and congratulations to the University of San Diego for continuing to follow these teachings and treating each student with the respect and love that they deserve.
It is confusing and perhaps, upsetting, to believe that any high school senior entertaining university has any reservation toward an institution holding inclusiveness to such high regard. If this was the case, we should consider this issue from all angles. What about those few with disposition toward Mexican-Americans, blacks, the disabled or the lower-class?
What about those few with disposition toward the pious, the political, the intelligent, the athletic? What about those few with disposition toward the rich, the influential, the privileged? Shall I continue?
Lest we forget how much work USD does in the community-at-large. I’m interested to know what these members think of the current situation we find ourselves in. Surely, they cannot be expected to support a university that is welcoming to any and all. Surely. That is clearly an unreasonable ask in 2012.
I would not be the man I am today had it not been for the opportunity presented to me by this institution. Granted, USD is not without erring. There were times when I cursed and yelled and stomped my feet in the halls of administration and classroom buildings alike. But, nine times out of ten, there were people there to help me find a solution and even, provide me comfort. There were people there to bestow patience, build me up, and even, make me smile. There were people there to remind me of the love and openness that I so loved about the "White Castle on the Hill." The name almost makes me laugh now. No matter how distant the property may have seemed, the university was never removed from the progression of the community around it.
It makes no difference who those people were. Although, I do find it interesting that as I reflect, I recognize the majority of those people were in fact, members of a community in question - a community that garners unwarranted issue, a community that does not deserve seething phone calls and emails, but the same love, equality, reverence and respect that Jesus preached.
With that, I hope that the internal USD community continues to follow these teachings, and in effect, teach us all something in the process.
again for your support and please keep it up!
As a graduate of the University of San Diego, I greatly appreciate your efforts to plan and execute the first ever Drag Show. I am excited to see students come together to celebrate and educate how amazing and diverse the LGBT community is. It is inspiring to hear how passionate the students have been to make this event happen amongst the negative talk and actions taken by our own members of the USD Community.
As someone who has not come from any religious background, I believe in an inclusive environment where all are welcome no matter their race, gender, class, or sexual orientation. I came from a high school where being openly gay is considered a sin and an outcast and many times have I witnessed degradation towards those who are proud for what they are.
That's why I loved being a student at USD. USD welcomed everyone with open arms and encouraged self-expression. And I have met the most amazing people from the LGBT community whom I will never forget because of their bravery and courage to never be anyone else but themselves.
I'm not a Catholic, but if I have learned anything from my four years in attending this university it is that our goal in life should be loving and compassionate human beings. It is shocking to see alumni and students who oppose the event spread hurtful messages. How is that being a loving and compassionate "Christian"?
Therefore, I stand with you and the rest of the USD community on your decision to continue promoting and executing this event to foster a safe and inclusive environment for students to express themselves as God made them to. And you can count on me to be standing in the crowd to cheer on PRIDE.
I graduated from the University of San Diego in 2003. I would like to first say that I was involved with the committee that helped interview the Presidential candidates the year you were chosen... you were my choice, and I stand by that decision today. Thank you!
While attending U.S.D. I was very engaged with the university community as a member of student senate, an active member of the United Front Multicultural Center (and president's council), President of Pride and a Rainbow Educator. I was also a resident assistant my senior year. And I'm a lesbian.
I learned a lot about myself at U.S.D. and a lot about my Catholic counterparts. I'm so glad I had the opportunity to learn that to be Catholic does not inherently equal close-minded and hateful, which is what I had come to learn prior to attending U.S.D. I met many loving Christians who a) were not trying to save my soul, b) were not trying to change me c) loved me for who I am. It was the mission of the school that drew me there, and it was the people that kept me there. I enjoyed a happy alliance with University Ministry and enjoyed my religion classes.
I want to thank you for supporting the students of Pride and the drag show that will be taking place. It is events like these that while they take place often outside of the campus environment without incident, send a message to the students that all identities are respected and valued.
Thank you for being a positive force- not only for the members of Pride, but for all of the other U.S.D. students that can reap the rewards of a university that respects ALL students.
Notes from Alumni >