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Mills: Inside and Out

Mills College
Presidential Communication
July 13, 2018

TO: Mills College Faculty and Staff
FROM: Beth Hillman
SUBJECT: Mills: Inside and Out

Dear all,

Please consider taking this three-question quiz before you head into your weekend this afternoon. This year is the tenth anniversary of Congress naming July as National Minority Mental Health Month in honor of Bebe Moore Campbell (1950–2006), an acclaimed author and advocate for the mentally ill. This year's goal is to reduce the stigma associated with mental health care, an important objective to which each of us can contribute. The quiz will help you better understand your own reactions to mental health. This summer, our Division of Student Life staff are preparing for an August retreat at which they will complete a mental health first aid curriculum that will help Mills support people experiencing mental health crises much like first responders support those in physical crises.

Political crises abound across the federal landscape this summer as changes in law and policy take effect. For higher education, those changes include the reversal earlier this month of federal policy guidelines pertaining to diversity in elementary, secondary, and higher education, a shift that the American Council on Education denounced as "sending precisely the wrong message" to colleges and universities about legal precedent and inclusion on campuses. Mills' commitment to inclusiveness, and to gender and racial justice, has not changed in the wake of these pronouncements, nor has our commitment to supporting our undocumented students changed as the federal government has faltered in finding a resolution for DACA students. Mills has signed on to an amicus brief that will be filed later this month in the Second Circuit in Texas v. United States, a case in which DACA students are challenging the federal rescission of DACA with the support of the Mexican American Legal Defense Fund.

While the Supreme Court has not altered its precedents on the legality of affirmative action and diversity in higher education, the changing composition of the Supreme Court has created uncertainty around settled law in many crucial arenas of civil rights. This week, I published an op-ed in the San Francisco Chronicle about gender harassment and Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh, aiming to shed light on an under-appreciated aspect of gender equity. A great story also ran on ABC7 News about Mills’ Test Optional Admission Policy this week.

All best,

Beth Signature




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Last Updated: 7/16/18