Dear UF College of Dentistry Family,
The senseless murder of George Floyd and countless other black Americans are brutal indicators of systemic racial injustice in our country, injustice that has gone on for far too long. Injustice that affects black Americans more than any others. It hurts to witness the events of the past few days. We hurt one another every moment we allow racism to continue. We need to do better to make sure that future generations will see racial injustice as a thing of the past.
The UF College of Dentistry is in the business of healing, teaching and discovering and these goals don’t just apply to oral health. We also need to do our part to heal racial divides in our community, to teach one another how to better understand different perspectives and experiences, and to discover ways to bring our community, nation and world closer through kindness and hope.
As a college and a community of scholars we strongly condemn racism and social injustice, and we will continue to work to promote equity and foster trust within our diverse community. This is an immense, entrenched challenge that requires global change, but each one of us has the power to affect change in our society. Our college’s vision statement says that we aspire to be global leaders in dental education, research, patient care and service. I personally pledge, and call on you to be a leader who empowers, who learns and educates, and who effects change to foster a truly inclusive, welcoming and safe community for everyone.
Dean Isabel Garcia