Seattle University's student newspaper since 1933

The Spectator

Seattle University's student newspaper since 1933

The Spectator

Seattle University's student newspaper since 1933

The Spectator

Faculty and Staff Endorsement of Student Groups Demands in Response to Israel’s War on Gaza

To President Eduardo Peñalver, Seattle University Students, Faculty, and Staff: 

We, the undersigned staff and faculty, write to endorse the demands made by the Muslim Student Association (MSA) and Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP), and co-sponsored by the Direct Action Coalition (DAC) and the Sustainable Student Action (SSA). These demands, in their own words, include the following: 

  1. Statement acknowledging the US-backed genocide in Gaza and CALL for an immediate and permanent ceasefire.
  2. Divest from Boeing and other weapons manufacturers.
  3. Carry out the SGSU resolution and provide financial portfolio transparency.
  4. Change the demonstrations clause and student code of conduct.

We believe these demands are eminently reasonable and aligned with Seattle University’s Mission, Vision and Values, especially its commitments to social justice and empowering leaders for a just and humane world. By taking the steps outlined here, Seattle University will model ethical leadership for its students by firmly saying no to an attempted genocide that has already killed at least 35,000 Palestinians (a provisional number considered a significant undercount given the number of bodies buried beneath rubble and in mass graves), including over 15,000 children, over 130 journalists, and over 350 medical personnel, as well as destroyed every hospital and university in Gaza. As faculty and staff who believe in the sanctity of all life, we cannot stand silent as these atrocities are committed with this institution’s tacit support through its partnerships and investments. In light of these dire conditions, it is clear the On Campus Demonstrations Policy and Speaker Policy must be revised to empower student activists as they organize events in response to this urgent crisis and others to come by removing arduous and unnecessary permit deadlines and speaker approval processes. Similarly, in the face of an ongoing genocide, the university must uphold its commitment to academic freedom for faculty and respect staff members’ rights to act in accord with their conscience. 

On May 10, 2024, President Eduardo Peñalver sent a university-wide email titled “Conflict in Israel and Gaza.” In it, President Peñalver outlined steps he is taking in response to student demands. These steps are not enough. We are concerned that students will be subjected to fragmented, inefficient, and wholly discretionary bureaucratic processes, that faculty and staff will be excluded from such institutional actions, and that neither students, nor faculty, nor staff, will have any decision-making power. We thus additionally ask for the following: 

  1. Inclusion of faculty and staff in any conversations between the president and students about these demands. 
  2. Accountability around these demands through quarterly updates, beginning with an update on all of these demands within the first two weeks of Fall Quarter 2024, and yearly reviews of any new processes or policies related to the demands by groups with broad student, faculty, and staff representation.

We believe faculty and staff, whose work is the core of the university’s function, must follow the lead of our courageous student activists not only in declaring our own outrage at the violent ethnic cleansing and ongoing slaughter in Gaza and the West Bank, but also in demanding substantive actions on the part of the university. Moving forward on the students’ demands would represent an actual commitment to “the actions we can take in response to events around the world…” that President Peñalver claims supersede hollow statements. 

We invite President Peñalver and his administration to show real moral clarity and leadership for a just and humane world by joining the Pope in calling for an immediate ceasefire; joining Evergreen State College in committing to divestment from Israel and weapons manufacturers sponsoring their violence; joining Brown and Northwestern University in providing full investment transparency; and serving as a model for truly open and non-restrictive student activism through a collaborative revision of the current student demonstration policy. Having the courage to stand against the tide of war and genocide will demonstrate our devotion to social justice as a historical reality worth fighting for and not only an abstract ideal. 

To sign this statement, fill out the form here. 

In solidarity, 

  1. Abdoulaye Ahmadou, Staff, Externship & Clinical Program Legal Administrative Assistant, Seattle University School of Law 
  2. Saheed Adejumobi, Faculty, Associate Professor, History 
  3. Anonymous, Faculty 
  4. Anonymous, Faculty 
  5. Anonymous, Faculty, Assistant Professor, English 
  6. Anonymous, Faculty, Associate Teaching Professor 
  7. Anonymous, Faculty, Philosophy 
  8. Anonymous, Staff 
  9. Anonymous, Staff
  10. Will Bassett, Staff, Assistant Director of Admission, Law School
  11. Claire Baumgardner, Staff, Administrative Assistant, CAS Office of the Dean
  12. Mary J. Brogan, Staff, Paralegal, Clinical Program, School of Law
  13. Sarah Cate, Faculty, Assistant Professor, Political Science 
  14. Robert S. Chang, Faculty, Professor of Law and Executive Director, Fred T. Korematsu Center for Law and Equality, Law 
  15. Jeremiah Chin, Faculty, Associate Professor, Law 
  16. Rashmi Chordiya, Faculty, Associate Professor, Public Affairs and Nonprofit Leadership
  17. Natalie Cisneros, Faculty, Associate Professor, Philosophy 
  18. Elizabeth Dale, Faculty, Associate Professor, Public Affairs and Non-Profit Leadership
  19. Dr. Joseph Nicholas DeFilippis, Faculty, Associate Professor, Social Work
  20. Amelia Seraphia Derr, Faculty, Associate Professor, Social Work 
  21. Eva Dicker, Faculty, Assistant Professor, Psychology 
  22. Fade Eadeh, Faculty, Assistant Professor, Psychology 
  23. Theresa Earenfight, Faculty, Professor Emerita, History & WGSS 
  24. Rob Efird, Faculty, Professor of Anthropology and Asian Studies, Anthropology and Sociology 
  25. Al Eisenbarth, Faculty, Adjunct Professor, Albers 
  26. Pilar Margarita Hernández Escontrías, Faculty, Assistant Professor, School of Law
  27. Anne Farina, Faculty, Assistant Professor, Social Work 
  28. Jarrad Felgenhauer, Faculty, Philosophy 
  29. Heather Reis Fike, Staff 
  30. Stefanie Fatooh, Staff, Director of Arts Programming, Visual Arts; Performing Arts & Arts Leadership
  31. GG Flint, Staff, Staff & Adjunct Instructor, College of Education 
  32. Jennifer Fricas, Faculty, Assistant Professor, College of Nursing 
  33. Daisy Garcia, Faculty, Clinical Assistant Professor, Nursing 
  34. Marina Cárcamo-García, Faculty, Assistant Professor, Modern Languages and Cultures
  35. Bobby Gaon, Faculty, Adjunct Instructor, Social Work 
  36. Sam Harrell, Faculty, Assistant Professor, Social Work 
  37. Amanda Heffernan, Faculty, Assistant Professor, Nursing 
  38. Wai-Shun Hung, Faculty, Associate Professor, Philosophy 
  39. Sonora Jha, Faculty, Professor, Communication and Media 
  40. Alexander Johnston, Faculty, Associate Professor of Film and Media
  41. Hye-Kyung Kang, Faculty, Professor, Social Work 
  42. Ally King, Staff, Externship Program Legal Assistant, School of Law
  43. Suzan Knowles, Faculty, Assistant Clinical Professor, College of Nursing
  44. Kate Koppelman, Faculty, Associate Professor and Chair of English
  45. Charles Lawrence, Faculty, Associate Professor, Anthropology & Sociology
  46. Erica Lilleleht, Faculty, Associate Professor, Psychology 
  47. Jennifer Lindsay, Faculty, Adjunct Faculty, Psychology 
  48. Colleen Loranger, Faculty, Instructor, College of Education 
  49. Rachel E. Luft, Faculty, Associate Professor, Anthropology & Sociology
  50. Tayyab Mahmud, Faculty, Professor, Law School 
  51. Alanna Martin, Faculty, Adjunct Instructor, Social Work 
  52. Kira Mauseth, Faculty, Teaching Professor, Psychology
  53. Alexander Mouton, Faculty, Associate Professor, Department of Visual Art
  54. David Neel, Faculty, Associate Professor, Mathematics 
  55. Nikkita Oliver, Faculty, Adjunct Law School 
  56. Nicole Plastino, Staff, Graduate program coordinator, Nonprofit Leadership, PANL
  57. Juan Carlos Reyes, Faculty, Associate Professor, English/Creative Writing
  58. Leanne Robertson, Faculty, Professor, Mathematics 
  59. Nova Robinson, Faculty, Associate Professor, History, International Studies, Women, Gender & Sexuality Studies 
  60. Benjamín Schultz-Figueroa, Faculty, Associate Professor Film and Media
  61. Becky Snow, Faculty, Adjunct Faculty, English 
  62. Dean Spade, Faculty, Professor, Law 
  63. Heidi Speck, Staff, College of Arts and Sciences 
  64. Mia Stroutsos, Staff, Associate Director for Persistence Initiatives, Office of Student Persistence 
  65. Benedict Stork, Faculty, Senior Adjunct Instructor, Film and Media
  66. Nicholas Tamarkin, Teacher 
  67. Darozyl Touch, College of Arts and Sciences Staff 
  68. Mehmet Vurkaç, Faculty, Assistant Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering
  69. Amy Walker, Faculty, Professor, Nursing 
  70. Anna Watson, Faculty, Adjunct Faculty, Social Work 
  71. Dr. Jason Wirth, Faculty, Philosophy
Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All The Spectator Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *