This post is part of a series of reflections on the recent events on campus. If you have anything that you would like to contribute, please feel free to reach out to us at staff[at]wesleying[dot]org.
The past few weeks have seen a lot of turmoil within our community, most notably the hospitalizations and arrests, and reactions to them, both within and beyond Wesleyan. I hope to speak to the ways that we have addressed these events, as well as other contentious issues, namely the DKE lawsuit and the recent WSA meetings concerning first generation students and institutional structure.
At times like these, it is important to talk to each other, in order to process, to heal, and to examine the needs of our communities. These are events that we should discuss, both as individuals and community members. All too frequently, however, the way we’ve been discussing them has led to more pain, frustration, and division within our community.
Rather than creating spaces to support each other while addressing problems, many of the discussions I’ve witnessed, both in person and in online forums, have allowed ideological and experiential differences to further divide us, leaving many students, myself included, feeling hurt, angry, or cynical. It’s important to note, though, that I have also heard many calls for kind and supportive dialogue. It is in that spirit that I share the following observations and requests.
This post is the first in a small series of reflections on the recent events on campus, to be published over the next few days. If you have anything that you would like to contribute, please feel free to reach out to us.
I am writing this in response to the traumatic and overwhelming events that have happened over the past few days – the hospitalization of a dozen students and the arrest of four others, as well as the media and institutional reactions. I hope that this can be a space of positive dialogue and solidarity, where we share our thoughts and reflections with compassion and humanity. I hope to counter the intense and destructive negativity and inappropriateness of some of the language being used to address these events in our own community, in person and online, in the media portrayals and in the administration’s emails. These events remind of us of the importance of fostering a supportive community, one that we must build on our own, as the student body. These thoughts hope to help support that process of reconciliation, healing, and empowerment.
Earlier today, Dean Mike Whaley sent two emails to the Wesleyan community regarding several health incidences linked to MDMA/Molly. Currently, 11 students have been hospitalized with symptoms consistent with overdoses of the drug.
We will continue to update this post as more information comes out about the situation.
The original emails from Dean Whaley and other updates can be found after the jump.
Update 2/23/15, 1:56pm: Dean Whaley sent us a short email about the situation:
Many of those who went to the hospital yesterday have been released, but there are still several students at Hartford Hospital, some in quite serious condition. Parents and family members are with each of them, and we continue to keep them in our thoughts. My team has been busy connecting with students here on campus to provide support – through CAPS, chaplains, class deans and Res Life staff. Incidents such as these shake many of us to the core, and I encourage students to talk with each other and with us about these events.