An Open Letter to Our MSU Asian Pacific Islander Desi American and Asian Communities

Dear College of Arts & Letters Students, Staff, and Faculty

We stand in solidarity with our Asian Pacific Islander Desi American (APIDA) and Asian communities in the wake of the racist and misogynistic killings in Atlanta this week. This most recent violence lies at the intersection of race and gender. It is part of a long history of oppression of APIDA and Asian individuals and communities in the United States, from the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 and the internment of Americans of Japanese descent during World War II, to the 1982 murder of Vincent Chin in the suburbs of Detroit and the hateful characterization of COVID-19 by some leading voices in American media and politics. The current pandemic has only increased anti-APIDA violence over the past year. We recognize the connections between these acts of violence and the smaller more everyday experiences through which APIDA individuals are marginalized as outsiders.

As leaders in the College, we continue to reckon with the legacies of white supremacy, to reflect on how we can support members of our APIDA and Asian communities more intentionally, and to identify ways to use our voices and power to enact meaningful change. We support calls to create a university-wide taskforce to combat anti-Asian/APIDA racism.

We will work with the College Advisory Committee (CAC), Chairs, Directors, members of our College Inclusive Practices Committee (CIPC), and the MSU Office of Inclusion and Intercultural Initiatives (OI3) to further develop the infrastructure we need to put diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) at the center of the mission of the College. We pledge to fully engage with and act on the concerns of APIDA students, staff, and faculty in those discussions. Our responsibility is to ensure that the changes we enact are systemic, personal, and enduring. 


Christopher P. Long

Sonja Fritzsche
Associate Dean of Academic Personnel and Administration

Cara Cilano
Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies

Bill Hart-Davidson
Associate Dean of Research & Graduate Education