To Whom It May Concern,
We the undersigned, students and supporters of the mission and purpose of Newman University, having committed ourselves to live and grow in a spirit of critical consciousness, and wishing to respect the personal dignity of our peers and the institutional integrity of our university, hereby request an alteration to the third clause of Newman University's Social Contract, which has been posted as a requirement for students to sign and abide by, before returning to campus. The third clause mandates that students, faculty, and staff: “agree to notify others if I feel unsafe or if I see potentially unsafe situations or behaviors on campus.”
Our reasons for requesting a change to this statement arise from our belief in Newman University as fostering a culture of trust, hope, and Christian identity. Students at Newman strive for academic excellence, and seek to be part of a community that views them with confidence and supports their endeavors. It is our belief that this third clause, far from helping students feel “safe”, will only serve to distract students and professors from their common goals, and turn peers against one another in a mandated position to be “always on the lookout.” Such a change in culture on our campus is not one that can be taken lightly.
Bearing in mind our rich and proud history, our unprecedented present, and the dynamic potential each individual on our campus carries with them, we petition and plead for a change to the third clause of Newman University's Social Contract. We ask for an amendment that will promote a positive and hopeful outlook; guidance from our superiors that will empower us to be a community of light in our society, instead of another place of darkness. We entreat our administration to continue fostering the excellent and devoted attitude of Newman University which upholds the dignity and power of the individual, while advocating for student-professor and peer-peer relationships that advance the academic, personal, and spiritual growth of both parties. We the undersigned, having listened well, understood deeply, and accepted proudly the Mission of Newman University, now strive to take up that Mission: we wish to transform society.