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Letter from Dr. Jason Smith to Texarkana College Community

June 2, 2020

To my Texarkana College family and community,

During the last few days, I have reflected on the mission and guiding values of Texarkana College and how we, as part of our greater community, can take a stand toward equality and justice. As a college, we are charged to advance our community through lifelong learning and to build a culture of trust where we support and respect each other. What we have experienced as a nation is a teachable moment for all of us. It is a reminder that racial injustice is real and prevalent and wrong. Racism and violence have no place in our community or in our nation.

The tragic events from this last week have led to a dialogue on our campus on ways we can recommit ourselves to building an inclusive environment where all are welcome and valued. Simply acknowledging our shock isn’t enough—we have a moral responsibility to do what is right. As a public community college, we know that a community cannot truly advance unless it is inclusive, civil, and diverse. We are committed to nurturing the support of our community of students and employees through training and development and by creating opportunities for meaningful dialogue and interactions. But this effort cannot exist solely in formal policies and handbooks. It will require each one of us to make a conscious effort every single day to reject those actions we know are wrong and hurtful. We cannot and will not tolerate instances of racism, bigotry, or hateful rhetoric or action, as individuals or as an institution.

To our students and our campus community, we hear you. We are listening. We are here for you. And we want you to know that everyone at Texarkana College is working hard to make sure your experience at TC is safe, meaningful, inclusive, and free from discrimination.

Texarkana College is in the business of building brighter tomorrows for our students and our community. I find hope in knowing our College’s guiding values and mission draws us all together to help each other flourish. I encourage you to join me in recommitting to the righting of wrongs and standing on justice and equality.

Dr. Jason Smith
Texarkana College

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