During this incredibly painful and difficult time in the world, we would like to amplify this message from the President at EMU:

October 18, 2024

“To the Eastern Michigan University community,

As we return from what I hope was a restful Fall Break, it’s incumbent upon me, and all of us, to acknowledge the profound difficulty of this moment for many in our campus community. At Eastern we bear a responsibility to care for each other and the broader campus community. This responsibility is never more important than in times of crisis and unrest in the wider world. The ongoing crisis in the Middle East presents one such time. 

A message from me can in no way address the historical geopolitical issues that have led to these horrific circumstances, and I am aware that there is no perfect way to address the situation without generating sadness, frustration or anger. But, as caring citizens of our campus community, we can all agree that civilians should never be targeted or fall victim to violence. Together we mourn the grievous loss of life and the unfolding crisis in Israel and Gaza.

Our commitment to each other

Eastern Michigan University is home to students and employees from around the world. Our diversity is central to our mission and remains one of our greatest strengths. Let us lean into that diversity now. Let us create a safe environment for those who are struggling. Let us ensure a free and fair exchange of ideas, while we commonly mourn the loss of life and humanitarian tragedy of this moment. And above all, let us honor the responsibility we have to one another, to act with care and respect, and to maintain the safety of all on our campus.  

Ensuring the safety and well-being of all members of our campus community remains my administration’s number one priority. Dialogue and understanding increase our shared experience on this campus; violence destroys it. Many in our community have family or friends who are caught up in this crisis; these individuals are experiencing heartache, fear, and anger. They deserve our empathy, patience, understanding, and support. Let us provide that. At this challenging moment, we believe most of all in each other, in Eastern, and in the power of our supportive, caring community.  

Providing support and encouraging dialogue

We are fortunate to have many groups and services on our campus that may be helpful for in-depth and thoughtful conversation or interaction about these difficult issues, including:

Other local resources include:

Helping those who are struggling

The University also provides resources for those who are struggling, including:

  • Our Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) office is staffed with caring professionals who are available to students. Visit the CAPS website for details on how to access a counselor. 

  • Employees can visit the Human Resources Wellness Programs website to learn how to access the Employee Assistance Program. 

Finally, please check in on one another and show kindness and empathy when interacting with others on and off campus. These are stressful times for everyone. When engaged in dialogue, be respectful of each other and remember that we are all members of one EMU community. Your understanding and compassion will go a long way in helping to keep our community safe and supported.”

James M. Smith, Ph.D.
President, Eastern Michigan University