External advisory committee recommendations

Last November, I laid out a series of actions that we would take to build on our commitment to combatting antisemitism and all forms of hatred at Cornell. Our comprehensive approach included rapid and forceful response to harassment or incitement to violence; a thorough review of university policies; new academic offerings and speaker series to educate our students, faculty, and staff; interfaith activities to build community; and enhanced training for faculty to help them support challenging discourse in the classroom. Importantly, I also convened a trustee committee, who provided me a sounding board for addressing the many issues we faced, and a committee of expert external advisors who were asked to provide an independent assessment of our approach to this critical work, as well as to offer ideas and recommendations to further it.

This latter committee engaged thoughtfully and intensely over the last six months, including holding meetings with a variety of campus stakeholders, and spending many hours in deliberation amongst themselves. Today, I am pleased to share the result of their efforts: a letter detailing nine recommended actions. Provost Kotlikoff and I have already begun discussing how to socialize the recommendations with our campus community after my retirement and the start of his interim presidency on July 1.

I am confident that the committee’s efforts will have a significant, positive impact on Cornell, guiding what we do in the coming years, and I am extremely grateful to the committee members for their hard work and diligence.


Martha E. Pollack