Our Commitment to Equality
By Eilif Serck-Hanssen,
June 2, 2020
For those of us in the United States, we have been watching what is happening in Minneapolis, and across the country. I am reminded of what we witnessed here in Baltimore back in 2015 following the tragic death of Freddie Gray while in police custody. These images are painful and familiar.
Both personally, and on behalf of the Laureate community, I acknowledge the long-term presence of unacceptable racism in this country. I cannot imagine the hurt, pain and sorrow being felt by the African American community today, and for weeks, months, years and decades past. Being quietly non-racist isn’t sufficient; we need to unite with a strong and unified voice, insisting that we will no longer be willing bystanders to racism and police brutality against this community or any other community or group of people in our country.
Today I offer support, love and compassion to the Black community – and stand in peaceful solidarity with you. You are our leaders, our staff, our students, our families and our fellow citizens. Be assured that you are seen and you are heard.
Minneapolis is the home of Walden University. A city where we have a proud history of supporting the local community. A community that is now hurting, deeply. Walden University has, by far, awarded more doctoral degrees to African American recipients than any other university in the United States, and has a firm commitment to promoting diversity, inclusion and equality. We know that one of the most impactful ways to create change is by having a seat at the table – and earning a doctoral degree is accelerating and expanding the influence of so many of our graduates. While this is something to be extremely proud of, there is always more we can do.
Believing in the transformative power of education, we must instill in our graduates a sense of humanity, accountability and urgency. Although education alone will not solve the entrenched systemic problems we are facing here in the United States and around the world, in a brighter future, equal access to quality education will be at the core.
Across our network, there are individuals, families and communities who face challenges and injustice each day. The context changes across geographies and cultures, but discrimination is too familiar. We are constantly inspired by the strength and resilience shown by members of the Laureate community, despite the hardest of circumstances.
As a company, we will continue to use our platform to actively be non-discriminatory in all we do, we will champion diversity, inclusion and equality across our workplace, and we will inspire a generation of graduates to continue advancing these principles in their work and throughout their communities.
The promise of the United States is what makes so many citizens proud, and what led so many of us to immigrate here. What happens in the United States is felt around the world, and all eyes are now on us. It is our responsibility to be part of advancing a more just, more equal nation for all.
Today, and every day. Across our own Laureate community, and beyond. Black Lives Matter.