The PSU ASA Executive Board sent this message to their student members:
I’m sure you are at this point well-aware of the terrible tragedies that have recently highlighted racial injustice throughout this country. Sadly, these events are neither new nor isolated, but instead reflect a systemic injustice that has been ignored for too long. We know many of you have already actively spoken out and started getting involved, but we think it is important to speak up not just as individuals, but as an entire organization. Racism and all other forms of discrimination have no place within the scientific community and act against the core mission and ethical principles of the Acoustical Society of America. Active unlearning of implicit and explicit biases is required from all of us in order to uproot and combat racism within our communities. As a scientific organization we want to allocate part of our time to proactively pursuing these goals.
We would like to highlight some key points from ASA’s official statement on racism and injustice posted to their website: https://acousticalsociety.org/
“It is our responsibility to actively oppose racial injustices and understand the impact of our own implicit biases, acknowledging that we are sometimes complicit within an oppressive system.”
“We must strive to be advocates of justice, to support policy and legislative changes that will decrease systemic racism in our organization and nationally, and to work for institutional reform. The ongoing, deeply destructive effects of systemic racism must be simultaneously addressed at many levels including within ourselves, our local communities, the ASA, and our nation.”
“Finally, let us be clear: Black Lives Matter. Black lives should have always mattered. Now is the time to transform the system so that Black lives not only matter but also will be respected and valued in the tapestry that is the United States. Then and only then can the country finally live up to the ideals and principles on which it was founded.”
It is our ethical duty as a regional chapter of ASA, and as human beings, to take this message to heart as we move forward. As we head into the next academic year and beyond, we will be planning events and meetings that align with this message. If you have any thoughts, please feel free to share them. We would love your input as we continue taking steps towards being an active, informed, and inclusive organization.
The Penn State ASA Executive Board
The national ASA Student Council also released this statement on their Facebook:
The ASA Student council stands firmly behind the ASA’s statement against racial injustice and systemic racism that the Black community is facing. As students, it is not only our job to listen and to learn, but also to foster progress and move forward. Passive dissent is not acceptable in the face of prejudice; we must actively oppose it.
The student council reaffirms our support of our black and minority students who have important voices in the Society. We wholeheartedly agree to the vision expressed by the ASA to foster a diverse, equitable, and inclusive acoustics community. Discrimination and racial injustice are still present and as a scientific society we must ensure that scientists and professionals in minority communities are heard and uplifted.
To our students, please know that we are here for you and that your point of view is of utmost importance to us. If anyone has suggestions or if you are in need of any support, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
The Penn State/State College PA area has been alive with protests and demonstrations following the George Floyd murder. Here are articles found on the web about State College’s protests:
- Week 1 protest articles: Onward State, Centre Daily Times 1, Centre Daily Times 2, StateCollege.com 1, StateCollege.com 2, WJAC, Daily Collegian
- Week 2 protest articles: StateCollege.com, Daily Collegian, Centre Daily
- Week 3 protest articles: Onward State, Enspire Mag
- Also noted in this Wikipedia article summarizing some of the protesting across Pennsylvania
Connect with relevant communities in the State College area/at Penn State:
- 3/20 Coalition – Facebook
- State College NAACP – Facebook
- Penn State Black Caucus – Twitter @PSUblackcaucus
- Penn State Black Student Union – Twitter @BSU_PSU
- NAACP at Penn State – Twitter @NAACP_PSU
- National Society of Black Engineers – Penn State Chapter – website
- Multicultural Engineering Graduate Association (MEGA) – website
- African American Studies at Penn State – website
- African American Chronicles, Black History at Penn State – link
- Daily Collegian Letters to the Editor – Being Black at Penn State – link