In response to the recent tragedy at Rutgers University, UR President Joel Seligman voiced his concerns to UR students through a special edition of the Weekly Buzz on Oct. 5. In the same vein as the tragedy, Seligman also commented on the recent posts on an anonymous online gossip website, which contained harmful sexist and racist comments about UR students and faculty members.
Seligman reminded students through the e-mail that one of the main values that UR is built upon is diversity, and that diversity is essential for students to learn from one another, and ultimately becoming successful individuals.
“Those who are most likely to succeed will be those best able to regard the diversity of human experience not as a challenge, but as a catalyst for their most inspired work, most creative innovation and, in some instances, most important friendships,” Seligman said.
The long lasting tradition of tolerance and respect is one of Seligman’s greatest prides, and he sees these traditions as one of the University’s “greatest strengths.”
Seligman warned students about the harms of social networking, especially the anonymity aspect of these websites. He concluded this special edition of the Weekly Buzz by asking students the open-ended questions regarding the kind of community that they would want to be a part of.
“As for those who anonymously posted to these hurtful websites, I do not want to know who you are,” Seligman said. “There is no big brother on our campus. But I ask you to engage in a simple thought experiment. Change the text of your posting. If the posting had referred to your race, your gender or you personally, is that the kind of campus to which you would want to belong?”