Dear UCLA Samueli Community,

The brutal killings of unarmed African Americans and the ensuing protests throughout the U.S. are painful reminders that we are doing something terribly wrong. Over the recent months, we have all witnessed the senseless killings of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and George Floyd. I am angered and saddened by the systemic failure of our country to address racial inequality, as I know you all are.

At UCLA Samueli, we must not stay silent amidst the grief and angst experienced by our Black students and colleagues. In times like these, silence implies complicity. We must raise our voices to assert that Black lives matter, and that it is our collective duty to stop bigotry, brutality and bias against our fellow citizens. Most importantly, we must resolve to examine ourselves, both individually and as a school, and to find solutions to address racial bias within our own communities.

I ask all our faculty members to reach out to their students during class to acknowledge the devastating effect of recent events, and to encourage them to seek counseling if needed. As educators, we must recognize the importance of empathy and compassion at this difficult time, and we must be flexible and supportive of our students who may have real difficulties staying focused on their studies. Many of them may be grieving in isolation because of COVID-19, and it is our duty to reach out to them and offer our encouragement. It is my hope that all our students will express compassion and kindness toward their friends and fellow students who are affected by these tragedies. And I ask our wider Samueli community to come together as a family to support our students and colleagues.

I know these are extremely challenging and troubling times, but I know we will prevail if we can stay true to our core Bruin values. Working together, I know we can make a difference.

In solidarity,


Jayathi Y. Murthy
Ronald and Valerie Sugar Dean