October 16, 2023
I want to welcome our students back from fall break. Even a couple of days off can be restorative. These past few weeks have been incredibly difficult for many members of our community. I hope you found time for yourselves and were able to get some much-needed rest.
With classes back in full session, our campuses again are brimming with people and activity. Yet, like many of you, I realize that I am passing students, staff, faculty, and visitors who have family members and friends being directly impacted by violence taking place in several regions of the world. Our hearts go out to them. For many, the pain and fear for loved ones make concentrating very hard, and concerns about their own safety and fears of retaliation are ever present. More than ever, a gentle and kind approach to each other is needed – a recognition of the humanity we all share and the ties that bind us. Showing our compassion and being aware that none of us knows the full extent of what others are experiencing or feeling is a big step we each can take.
In the coming days, we will continue to provide service and support systems for everyone. We continue to supplement our mental health and public safety teams. USC is a unique and extraordinary community. With close to 80,000 Trojans on our campuses, hospitals, and clinics, and more than 480,000 alumni – Trojans come from every state, more than 150 countries, and from virtually every culture, religion, walk of life, and perspective. Our diverse and beautiful community is our most special gift. We learn from and are enriched by each other; our bonds are lifelong and worldwide. As we have in the past, by drawing upon our extraordinary family and our humanity, we can make USC a respite of compassion and kindness. Trojans always care for Trojans.
I wish each of you a safe and successful second half of the semester.