August 23, 2019

Dear Spelman Community,

I write with an update to the events of Tuesday night. First, I am pleased to report that all four students are recovering. Three have been discharged from Grady Hospital and we expect the fourth to be released very soon.

We extend a special thanks to the Clark Atlanta University students who came to the rescue of Spelman students with tourniquets and with the application of pressure to the wounds. You are genuine heroes and we salute you.

In the aftermath of Tuesday night’s events, Spelman and leaders from the Atlanta University Center have begun an extensive review of security measures around our four campuses. Public Safety Officers from Spelman and the other campuses met with the Atlanta Police Department to develop solutions. In the immediate term, the following steps will take place:

  • Increased campus police presence: Members of the AUC campus police force will move to 12 hour shifts, with the emphasis placed on patrolling and visibility.
  • Increased APD presence around AUC campuses.
  • Temporary security increased outside of the AUC Robert W. Woodruff Library through contracted security services.
  • Continued cooperation with the aggressive investigation being conducted by the APD.

At Spelman, Dr. Darryl Holloman, vice president of Student Affairs, will continue conducting listening sessions with students in resident halls to solicit feedback on future security measures.

Next week, the Spelman Student Government Association, led by their president Nia Page, C'2020, who has been engaged in caring, communicating, and advocating for her Spelman sisters and AUC students, will host a town hall conversation to review some of the proposed security measures.

On another note, I want to share how moving and encouraging it has been to witness how the Spelman community has responded with support for the injured students, their families and for each other.

I'd like to extend a special appreciation to Dr. Neichelle Guidry, dean of Sisters Chapel and director of the WISDOM Center, for opening Sisters Chapel after the incident to students, as well as faculty and staff, to gather, commune, pray and support each other. I'd also like to lift up those compassionate faculty who set aside moments during classes for students to discuss and reflect on recent events. And, a special thanks to Dr. Holloman and his entire Student Affairs team for their responsiveness to all of our students.

May we all enjoy a restful and renewing weekend,

Mary Schmidt Campbell, Ph.D.

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