Administrative Responses to the Open Letter from Students of Color

Support and Developments

Dear Coalition Supporters and Allies,

We send a heartfelt thank you for the increasing show of encouragement, love, and solidarity from current students and esteemed alumni. We have received letters of support from a broad spectrum of the Georgetown Law community, including requests for alumni involvement opportunities, press inquiries from peer institutions about the Coalition’s organizing efforts, and offers of financial support for future efforts from campus allies.

Furthermore, GULC Administration responded promptly to our open letter and list of demands. We received correspondences from Deans William M. Treanor and Mitchell Bailin, expressing concern and willingness to meet with members of the Coalition. We include excerpts from their correspondences below.

Excerpt from Dean of GULC, William M. Treanor:

“Dear Members of the Coalition,

Thank you for your open letter. You have expressed important and troubling concerns about the experience of students of color at Georgetown Law and in the broader community, and you have shared thoughtful proposals about action steps the Law Center could take to address those concerns. I and my colleagues in the faculty and senior administration at the Law Center take your concerns very seriously and want to discuss them with you. We look forward to a continuing partnership with you, with our student affinity groups and with the entire student body to ensure this is a safe, inclusive community where all students can thrive and where we regularly and thoughtfully address the most difficult social justice issues of our day.

Excerpt from Dean of Students, Mitchell Bailin:

“Dear Coalition members,

I look forward to joining you and the Dean in coming weeks to discuss your concerns further and identify ways we collectively can make the Law Center a safer and more inclusive place for students of color.

I appreciate that some of you are feeling traumatized by the deeply troubling events that have occurred across the nation over the last few months, feelings perhaps intensified by what you feel has been an inadequate response from the Law Center.  With respect to possible exam deferrals, you should consult directly with the Registrar, Denise Sangster, who evaluates requests for deferral on a case-by-case basis consistent with the exam deferral policy in the 2014-2015 Student Handbook of Academic Policies.”

We thank GULC Administration for responding quickly and with apparent concern. As we formulate next steps, we will keep our supporters and allies abreast of developments. We expect our demands to be taken seriously, and we look forward to what we hope will be the first of a number of productive conversations between the Coalition, GULC Administration, and supporting GULC student organizations and allies, that will lead to tangible outcomes.

In Solidarity,

The Coalition of Students of Color at Georgetown Law 

Excerpts from other supportive correspondences received by the Coalition:

“I think the tireless efforts you have made to push for justice and to address the institutional failings, not only of our criminal justice system, but also Georgetown’s response to it, deserves our support. Please let me know if and how I can help. And please keep up this fight! We desperately need your leadership on this activism-averse campus.” – Current GULC Student

“Please add my email to any listservs of groups that are trying to improve the situation on campus!  I saw the letter to the administration this morning and I could not agree more.”  – Current GULC Student

“I just read your open letter–thought it was great. I’m a recent graduate of Georgetown and wanted to suggest that the Coalition also provide resources for alum. We are constantly asked for donations, and I think maybe a suggested email or list of talking points would be helpful to respond to GULC. I really appreciate the work you are doing, everyday. ” – GULC Alumnus

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