I am writing in response to the letter to the editor by Ms. Martha Vargas Bogliani regarding Message Center Remembrances.
There is no doubt that the death of a student is a traumatic event that impacts the entire community. To serve the needs of the family, students, faculty and staff, it is our protocol to send a campus wide notification to share information available to the University of the untimely passing and to inform the community of the support services available. In all cases, it is our intention that such messages are done with the utmost respect to the deceased student and their family.
In situations where the deceased student is not on campus or not enrolled in classes, sometimes there is a delay in such information being shared with the University. I can assure Ms. Vargas Bogliani that the campus wide notification was made as soon as we learned of Dominic’s passing.
While we try to craft thoughtful and personal notifications sometimes the circumstances and/or lack of time do not provide us with an opportunity to conduct extended outreach to gather additional information to share with the community. Nonetheless, I am of the mindset that we can always improve how we respond and support the community in times of crisis and I appreciate the time the Ms. Vargas Bogliani took to express her concerns.
Moments of sadness, like the loss of Dominic and Timothy, reveal the very meaning of community. It is my hope that during times when we share sadness together we also gain strength from each other, while respecting that the grieving process is different for each person and each family.
Sandra Johnson is the Senior Vice President of Student Affairs. The Student Affairs office is the office responsible for sending all Message Center emails to students and faculty.