September 21, 2001

Dear Tulane Community,

This Tulane Talk is focused on thanking all of you who have given of your time, energy, and faith in response to the events of the last ten days. Your actions exemplify the very spirit that makes me so hopeful for the future. No matter what we may face in the weeks and months ahead, we will confront and overcome all of the challenges together. I am sure of this.

These types of communiqu├ęs were not what I had in mind when I started Tulane Talk earlier this year. But I am grateful that I have a means to reach all of you during these trying times. This week I have heard stories from several members of our Tulane community whose family members or loved ones were among the victims of last week's terrorist attacks. Some of these victims were workers inside the World Trade Center while others were among the fire fighters and police officers who bravely came to their rescue. Our condolences and continued prayers are with all those who have been so deeply affected by this tragedy.

I have been overwhelmed by the response of the Tulane community to this national crisis. Hundreds of us, of all faiths, gathered to pray for and remember our fellow citizens at several memorial services both on the uptown campus and at the Health Sciences Center. Faculty members led forums and student discussions in the hope of arriving at some understanding of this senseless attack. Counselors visited residence halls and spoke with students about their feelings.

A counseling phone line was also established for students, faculty and staff. Members of our Public Safety Office, Student Affairs Office and the Center for International Students and Scholars have worked in concert with the New Orleans Police Department and the FBI to ensure the safety of all of our students, especially those of international origin. These, and similar efforts, will continue in the days and weeks ahead. For a list of all our crisis support services and other related information please visit

I have been particularly pleased with our students who took the lead on many of the relief efforts, including spearheading the blood drive and collecting money for the victims. By the way, you can still make monetary donations at a special collection booth at the University Center or by sending your check, made payable to the Tulane Disaster Fund, to the Office of Student Programs, Suite 204.

I know there are many other steps, too numerous to mention, that Tulane students, staff and faculty members continue to take in response to events facing our nation.. Like any good family, we are sticking together while reaching out to others in need. I have no doubt that we will continue to do this as part of our duty to one another and to our country. As long as we continue to support one another we and our nation will emerge from this tragedy stronger than ever.

I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for all you are doing and I ask you to continue these efforts for as long as they are needed.


P.S. In the midst of everything happening this week a successful young alum from the West Coast called to tell us that he and his company were donating millions of dollars to various relief funds for the victims of last week's tragedy. However, he also mentioned that he was immediately giving $1.5 million to Tulane in recognition of how he felt about the university. This is the kind of spirit and generosity that defines this country.

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