Sent 6/2/20

Dear MSU Community,

In her message this morning, President Cruzado reaffirmed the university's commitment to diversity in all its forms, as well as to MSU's mission of providing education to all.

Members of our community have expressed uncertainty around how to begin conversations about race and racial injustice, or they fear saying the wrong thing. While it can be challenging to talk about race, we each have a responsibility to educate ourselves on these topics and dare to engage in conversation. Just as many of the diverse members of our community have learned difficult lessons through their personal experiences with these systems, allies and advocates must be willing to develop an understanding and deepen their knowledge of systemic racial challenges.

To support you in beginning these conversations, I am providing the below list of resources.

These resources add to the extensive list curated by the Office of Diversity and Inclusion and the Diversity and Inclusion Student Commons. They enhance and align with my office's ongoing efforts, which include developing a plan to increase faculty diversity, supporting the success and sense of belonging of students from underrepresented racial groups, and conducting regular campus climate surveys.

Over the next week, my office will be compiling additional recommended readings, as well as facilitation guidelines and other tools to empower the MSU community to hold crucial conversations. We will also be planning events for the university and the community at large to meet and discuss issues of race in a supportive and inclusive environment.

Race affects us all, no matter our identities or where we live. As our communities and nation work to address long-standing inequities, understanding and having the language to discuss race and diversity will be more important than ever. Educating ourselves is a key step toward building a just and equitable society.

I hope you find this list of resources useful, and please look forward to future news of events from my office in the weeks to come.


Ariel Donohue
Senior Diversity and Inclusion Officer


Online Resources




  • "The Hate You Give" - Angie Thomas
  • "Stamped from the Beginning" - Ibram X. Kendi
  • "A People's History of the United States" - Howard Zinn


  • "Me and White Supremacy" - Layla F. Saad (note: this is an interactive tool that requires personal work beyond simply reading)
  • "How to Be an Anti-Racist" - Ibram X. Kendi
  • "Just Mercy" - Bryan Stevenson
  • "Why Are all the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria" - Beverly Daniel Tatum