January 31, 2023

Dear Ram Community:

As we prepare to celebrate Black History Month at CSU with a series of events to honor the triumphs of Black Americans, explore the Black Experience and acknowledge past and present oppressions, we must pause on this eve of our annual observations to remember the tragic death of 29-year-old Tyre Nichols.

It has been four days since the Memphis Police Department released videos showing the brutal police beating of Mr. Nichols who was unarmed and screaming for his mother’s help only 80 yards from his home. Though Nichols and the five officers who showed complete disregard for his life were Black, no one should dismiss the role anti-Blackness and systemic racism played in this young man’s killing. The investigation into his death continues to evolve as other officers and first responders have been fired or placed on leave.

We acknowledge that processing these events is difficult for many in our community. We want to remind you that well-being resources are available for anyone in need: Student Support Resources and Faculty and Staff Resources.

As our nation collectively grieves for Mr. Nichols and his family, peaceful protests continue in Memphis and across the nation with calls to examine the root cause of the harm done to Mr. Nichols and to so many others whose deaths preceded his. As leadership of Colorado State University, we echo that call.

Black History Month events begin tomorrow at 4 p.m. at the Lory Student Center Theatre with food, music and live performances offered in community and in the spirit of Black tradition. We encourage you to attend and visit the CSU Black/African American Cultural Center’s website for the full list of more than 20 programs. There is something there for all faculty, staff and students. And even as we celebrate our community this Black History Month, we will remain mindful that there is still much work to do at CSU and around the globe.


Kauline Cipriani
Vice President for Inclusive Excellence

Blanche Hughes
Vice President for Student Affairs

Jay Callaghan
Chief of Police, CSU Police Department

Janice Nerger
Interim Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs

Amy Parsons
Incoming President

Rick Miranda
Interim President