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Letter from President Harroz and OU Leaders: Anti-Asian Violence and Discrimination

March 17, 2021

Dear OU Family,

It’s with deep sadness and horror that we write today in response to the recent upsurge in anti-Asian violence and discrimination. Yesterday’s murders in the Atlanta area are the most recent reminder of appalling acts of violence that have disparately affected the Asian community both historically and throughout the course of the pandemic. The marked rise in acts of anti-Asian hatred and violence – which have often targeted women – is deplorable. We condemn these repulsive acts of racialized and gender-based violence and stand with the Asian and Asian-American members of our OU community.

Xenophobia and racism have no place at OU. We are committed to being a community of care and true belonging for all people. We call upon all members of the OU community to continue to reject hatred and violence and strive instead for empathy, understanding, and compassion for all people.

Please remember, OU’s counseling center remains open and can provide services by phone or Zoom. Counselors can be reached at (405) 325-2911 (Norman), (405) 271-7336 (HSC), or (918) 660-3109 (Tulsa) to make an appointment.

Live On, University,


Joseph Harroz, Jr.


Dr. Scott Fritzen

Dean, David L. Boren College of International Studies

Dr. Belinda Higgs Hyppolite

Vice President for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer

Dr. Jill Irvine

Interim Senior Vice President and Provost, Norman Campus

Dr. Jason Sanders

Senior Vice President and Provost, OU Health Sciences Center

Dr. David A. Surratt

Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students