As a leader in research, teaching, and service to humanity, Vanderbilt must tirelessly persevere and aspire to seek creative and bold solutions that celebrate difference, and develop the incredible potential found within every member of our academic community.
At Vanderbilt everyone must have ample opportunities to thrive, and to feel included and engaged at the core of campus life. Who we are, what we teach, and what we discover must be tethered strongly to the societal challenges that confront our nation and world.
This work — to insist on inclusion not exclusion; to be self-aware and not self-satisfied — is essential. Our excellence and indeed our very existence as a great research university depend on engaging in challenging conversations and forging innovative solutions. We should not underestimate the work ahead. It will present difficult moments. As a scholarly learning community, however, we view these challenges from an advantageous perspective. We can be passionate, thoughtful, and insightful in our discussions and disagreements. We are committed to civil discourse, and to learning from one another. Those vibrant and rich differences represent the essence in how new ideas and structures can be created.
Cornelius Vanderbilt’s founding gift made in the shadow of the Civil War, to create an educational institution to heal up the deep wounds of the nation, inspires our mission. Today, we continue that charge as we take steps to make Vanderbilt better and stronger for the generations that follow.