City College Times

Post-Election campus and community climate

Byron D. Clift Breland, Ph.D., President, San Jose City College

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Dear Jaguar community,

As reactions to the Presidential
election continue to ripple across
the nation and emotions simmer
throughout our communities; we
are undoubtedly confronted with
our own reactions and certainly
with the reactions of our students.
The truth is, for many in our
community, these results don’t feel
real and they are indistinguishable
from feelings of fresh, close grief.
Regardless of anyone’s politics,
it is somewhat surprising, and
extremely disappointing to many,
including myself, that in our time,
a candidate can win the Presidency
of the United States of America
after a long campaign of slinging
threats and insults at historically
disenfranchised people who have
worked hard to contribute to the
beauty of this nation.
The results of Tuesday’s
presidential election is a stark
reminder that the country is in fact
divided between those who want
to make our “nation great again”
(alone) and those who want to “make
it great” (together). The fact is, the
president-elect, Mr. Donald Trump,
has made statements threatening to
ban Muslims from the United States,
refuse refugees, deport millions of
undocumented workers/students
and build a wall on the border
with Mexico. Moreover, he has
disparaged, Mexican Americans,
African Americans, women and
people with disabilities. Obviously,
these are all people that make up
the critical mass of our student
body and college staff. Our values
of inclusion, diversity, and equity
will continue to drive how we serve
ALL individuals at San Jose City
As the significance of these
election results continue to unfold,
I want to encourage us, as a College
community, to be responsive to
our students, and to one another.
Many are experiencing feelings
of uncertainty and expressing a
good deal of anxiety and fear as
we all move into an unknown and
seemingly volatile future. I want
to reaffirm that our College and
District will continue to uphold
the values of democracy,
freedom, social justice,
and respect for the law and
the dignity of all people,
independent of national
origin, skin color, religion,
gender, sexual orientation or
political views.
To that end, I want to
invite everyone to be open to
dialogue and to responding
to student reactions by
being ready and willing to
listen and by being prepared
to make referrals to the
appropriate resources when
On Tuesday, November
15th from 12 noon – 2 pm
we will be hosting a campus
forum featuring college staff
and student leadership in the
theatre. This will provide
us with the opportunity to
share and process these events as a
Please feel free to attend and
to recommend that your students
participate. Additional information
and fliers will be disseminated over
the next several days leading up to
the event.
I want to thank the Student Affairs
team for their swift action in setting
up this opportunity to engage with
one another. I also want to thank all
of you for your on-going care and
responsiveness to the concerns of
our students.
There is a lot of work to do;
however, I am optimistic that we
have a strong community, and
country, and are well positioned to
support, encourage, uplift and love
one another, and our students, as
we move forward together from a
position of strength and unity for a
more hopeful tomorrow.
Student success will continue to
be our number one priority… Go
Byron D. Clift Breland, Ph.D.
President, San Jose City College

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The Voice of San Jose City College since 1956
Post-Election campus and community climate