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Message from Chair Tovar and President Jessell

Message from Chair Tovar and President Jessell



December 1, 2023 at 12:39pm

Dear members of the university community,

In the past few days, we have received several inquiries from members of the university community, as well as the wider local community, about a draft resolution being circulated by some members of the Student Government Association (SGA). 

It is important to recognize that this is a draft resolution brought forward by a few students out of our total student population of approximately 56,000, and that the draft resolution was not listed as an item on the SGA senate’s agenda.

We recognize our students’ right to debate and the rights of SGA as an independent body. The draft resolution has not gone through the SGA process for adoption, and we have no idea whether it will ever be adopted. Nevertheless, we cannot be silent because, unfortunately, this document has been widely distributed and has caused much pain to many in our community. We note that this draft resolution contains inaccuracies and in no way represents our position as leaders of FIU.

We have been very clear that FIU condemns the actions of Hamas on Oct. 7, and fully supports Israel’s right to defend and protect itself against terrorism.  

We also grieve for the suffering and loss of life of innocent civilians in both Israel and Gaza and for the unfolding humanitarian crisis, as a result of the Oct. 7 Hamas terrorist attack.

We are a community of learning, where we encourage civil discourse and the exchange of ideas to foster compassion and understanding on our campuses. While speech is protected by the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, we expect our FIU community to be thoughtful and exercise their rights in a responsible way, and to be respectful of those who have different perspectives and experiences. We have zero tolerance for acts of violence or aggression. At FIU, we condemn all forms of discrimination, including antisemitism and Islamophobia. If any member of our community experiences any type of discrimination, it is important that they report it to the Office of Civil Rights Compliance and Accessibility at 305-348-2785 or 1-888-520-0570.

Anyone who feels threatened, on or off campus, should call police immediately. You may reach FIU Police by dialing 305-348-5911 at MMC and 305-919-5911 at BBC. The non-emergency number is 305-348-2626.

We have a series of other resources available to the university community and encourage everyone to access them as needed: FIU’s Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) are available to provide support to students seeking counseling during difficult times. Students may contact CAPS at 305-348-2277. Faculty and staff who seek support are encouraged to reach out to the Office of Employee Assistance and Wellness at 305-348-2469.



Rogelio (Roger) TovarChair, FIU Board of Trustees

Kenneth A. JessellPresident