I write this message to all of you in our international student community following the posting of an overtly racist social media video that contains vile and harmful language. Undoubtedly by this point nearly all of you are aware of this matter and its impact as the semester winds to a close. The video has caused harm, hurt, and confusion for UW-Madison students, staff, and faculty. The very fact that this sort of sentiment still exists in today’s world and especially in our campus community is greatly disturbing. We condemn the language in the video and the ignorant perspective it expresses. I want you all to know that our staff are here to support you, listen to your concerns, sincerely consider your feedback, and advocate for a more inclusive campus community.
There are campus resources available to help, and we want to repeat these here to be sure that you know how to access them.
Resources to support you
We encourage you to seek the support you need when it feels right for you. The end of the semester comes with its own stress, and events like this can add pressure that impacts your academic, social, and personal lives. It is okay to ask for help, and ISS is here to support and connect you to the resources you may need. Asking for and seeking help does not impact your student immigration status.
- University Health Services (UHS) offers individual and group counseling sessions, including a 24-hour crisis line (608-265-5600 option 9) and Let’s Talk.
- Employee Assistance Office offers personal counseling and wellness coaching for staff and graduate student assistants.
- Dean of Students Office offers individual or group support to navigate campus resources to support your personal, academic, and overall well-being.
- Know your rights as an international student if you choose to participate in social activism, such as protests, in solidarity with your peers.
How to report an incident
Acts of hate, bias, discrimination, and violence do not have a home here at UW-Madison.
- If you experience or witness an incident of hate or bias, please report the incident to the university.
- If you experience of witness an act of violence or aggression, call 9-1-1 to report the incident to police.
International Student Services is committed to fostering a safe and welcoming campus community where all students, staff, and faculty feel a sense of belonging. The International Division will continue to advocate for your needs and our ISS staff and student leaders will continue to deepen collaboration with partners across the university. We also continue to engage in our own personal learning journeys as we strive to become better global citizens who actively oppose hate and racism in all forms.
In closing, please take care of yourself and others around you, especially those most deeply impacted by this incident. Do not hesitate to reach out if ISS can help in any way.