Campus Update – April 29

April 29, 2024

Dear Emory Community,

Over the past week, Emory has experienced unprecedented protests and disruptions. We are not alone. Nationwide, universities are grappling with events that have deeply shaken our respective communities. I have heard from many of you, and I want you to know that I am listening. I understand your concerns, your fears, your frustrations, and your outrage. As we enter the final week of the academic year, I am focused on protecting our campuses, supporting peaceful expression for all members of our community, and finding ways to foster healing and rebuild trust.

I would like to use this message to update you on last Thursday’s events.

Based on the information we had early Thursday morning, we determined that the individuals who constructed the encampment on our Quad were not members of our community. It is clear to us now that this information was not fully accurate, and I apologize for that mischaracterization. My goal was to remove a growing encampment, as allowing such an encampment would have been highly disruptive, affecting everything from classes and exams to our ability to hold Commencement. I remain firm that such encampments cannot be permitted at Emory.

Let me be clear: I am devastated that members of our community were caught up in law enforcement activity enforcing the removal of the encampment. The videos of these interactions are deeply distressing. I take Thursday’s events very seriously and we are launching a thorough review of them so that we can develop recommendations to improve how we keep our community safe. This review will include how Emory engages external law enforcement agencies.

I am committed to supporting our students and faculty who wish to express their views peacefully. We will not tolerate conduct that undermines these efforts. I know that many members of our community are focused on their classes, research, exams, and upcoming graduation. We are working hard to keep our campus as free from disruption as possible so that these important core functions of the university can carry forward at the highest level.


Gregory L. Fenves