On the current crisis in Ukraine

February 25, 2022

Dear members of the campus community, 

We are deeply disheartened over the crisis in Ukraine and, like all of you, are in solidarity with them as they face the devastating consequences of the Russian Federation’s military assault on their nation. As people in Ukraine seek refuge within and outside of their borders, we know that there are Russian people who are marching in the streets and declaring their stance publicly with signs that clearly read “No War”. Their courage in speaking out against the leaders who chose this violent path is remarkable and demonstrative of people who seek peace throughout the world. 

We are also firm in our rebuke of this unconscionable and horrific act and recognize that all of us are interconnected and deeply affected in crisis moments like this one. We repudiate any and all acts of war. 

Our community has banded together throughout the global pandemic and continued racial injustice in the United States and will do so in this situation as well. We understand deeply that this situation may evoke a multitude of feelings, particularly for those who have experienced conflict and war. Our ethos of care at Mount Holyoke extends to each and every member of our community including the students, faculty, staff and alums who are interconnected. Please do not hesitate to avail yourself of the resources that are available to you in advising, counseling and via our online support. 

We want to remind you of these resources: 

  • A full list of resources for students can be found on this web page
  • Faculty and staff are encouraged to reach out to the Employee Assistance Program at 888-881-5462. 

On March 8, the McCulloch Center for Global Initiatives will be hosting a discussion on the crisis in Ukraine. Speakers will be Stephen Jones, professor of Russian studies and the director of the program on Georgian studies at the Davis Center at Harvard University, Christopher Mitchell, assistant director of international relations and politics and Natalie Sabanadze, Cyrus Vance visiting professor in international relations and former head of the Georgian mission to the European Union. Sohail Hashmi, professor of international relations on the Alumnae Foundation and the chair of international relations will be the moderator. 

Mount Holyoke values inclusion and has intentionally cultivated a vibrant international community and thus we have alums, students, faculty and staff who are likely directly impacted by the current travesties in Eastern Europe. We want you all to know, especially our community members from Ukraine and Russia, we send our hopes for comfort and support as you may be particularly concerned for family members and others you care about in that region. 

Our community continues to be a place where we will center peace, understanding, dialogue and affirmation. As Ukranians and Russians who are speaking out against this action may be under particular pressure, we urge everyone to educate themselves on this crisis and figure out strategies for support that make sense for you. The fight for freedom, justice and equality for all people begins with each decision we each individually make to support the collective good. 

In solidarity, 

Marcella Runell Hall
Vice President of Student Life and Dean of Students

Kijua Sanders-McMurtry
Vice President of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Dorothy E. Mosby
Interim Dean of Faculty and Vice President for Academic Affairs; Mary E. Woolley Professor of Spanish