Administrative update on cat

In the early part of the semester you received a letter from the Deans concerning an investigation related to the death and mutilation of a cat found on the door of one of the houses on the Fraternity Quad.

The letter called for “full cooperation” with the investigators from Security and additional resources were assigned to help facilitate this process.

The investigation has yielded a great deal of information over these last few months. The first priority of the investigation has focused on the cause of the demise of the cat.

There is sufficient evidence in the review of the matter to this point such that university officials believe that the cat was not killed on this campus and that a felony probably did not occur. Several other determinations have been made.

As a result, one of the houses on the Quad will not be proceeding in making new housing placements for next year. In addition, a variety of individual judicial proceedings will be conducted over the next few weeks related to this incident.

Some important questions still remain. The focus of the investigation therefore is moving towards other aspects of the case. Specifically, investigators are focusing on what happened to the cat once it reached campus.

We now need to hear more from the remainder of the students associated with the Fraternity Quad area about any additional information they can add to this information gathering.

To this end, we are asking that house managers and/or officers distribute Honor Report/Account form and confidentiality envelopes to all of your members. We want to be certain that everyone has had the opportunity to fully cooperate with this investigation so that group and individual housing plans can proceed without interruption.

We also need to determine that we have received the kind of cooperation we had expected. It is essential that the investigative staff hears from all of your members, including active, new members and non-residents.

Security will use these statements, in the order they are received, along with other information they have gathered to assess the facts in this situation.

We want to thank you for your cooperation in this matter.

? Jody AsburyInterim Dean of Students

? Logan HazenDirector of Residential Life

Remembering activism

Though far away from Rochester now in Bordeaux, France, I still read from time to time about developments at the UR and write now to comment on the article “BSU revisits 1999 protest” in the Feb. 28 issue.

I thought your choice of quotations brought out quite poignantly the strength and the weakness of student-initiated movements for necessary change on college campuses.

The strength is that students bring the task energy, generosity, optimism, and as Mr. Polite says, “planning.” But they leave, with no certainty that the faculty and administrators who stay will bring their hard work to fruition ? or even that their efforts will be remembered.

According to Ms. Peart, “Just like students, [administrators] have to be reminded.” How right she is. A case in point is students’ cyclically-renewed demand for African and African- American Studies ? in 1969-1970, in 1984-85 and again in 1999.

One way of keeping memories fresh is to write up and publish what was attempted in 1999 and what has been achieved to date, what remains to be done and to make sure that copies are placed in relevant libraries.

My own chronicle of what was possible in the 1980s and 1990s is available on the Web site of the Institute on Race and Social Division at Boston University, at www.bu.edu/irsd under the papers section.

It is true that progress often occurs in “small, incremental steps.” But regression, too, can step daintily, and so one task of memory is to help us know the difference.

Good luck to you and to your student colleagues.

? Karen E. Fields, Ph. D.

Founding Director of the Frederick Douglass Institute for African and African-American Studeies



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