Message from the Chancellor: Supporting our AAPI Community

Dear Riverbats,

This week marks the start of a new lunar year. It is a holiday celebrated by billions of people around the world — including here at Austin Community College.

The day is meant to be a time of celebration. Instead, we’re coping with a tragic attack on our Asian American and Pacific Islander communities. At least 10 people lost their lives and more were injured at a celebration in California. While we don’t know all the details, it is clear this was a senseless act of violence. ACC offers its condolences to the victims, their families and friends, and everyone impacted. We must come together in difficult times like these, because an attack on one community affects us all.

As one of the nation’s first Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation (TRHT) Campuses, ACC is committed to providing an inclusive space where everyone feels safe, welcomed, and appreciated. It is our responsibility to embrace our differences and celebrate our diverse populations and cultures. As Riverbats, we are resilient by nature. In moments like these, we must come together and engage in healing conversations.

This week, ACC’s Asian American and Pacific Islander Cultural Center is working with our TRHT Center and Office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion to host a Lunar New Year Listening Session and Conversation. The session will include an opportunity to learn more about the importance of the holiday, share experiences, and enjoy cultural refreshments. An ACC clinical counselor also will be on-site for those who want to talk. I hope you will consider joining the discussion. More information is on our TRHT website.

For those of you struggling, please reach out for support. ACC’s Counseling Services are available. Students may reach out to our counselors, and employees may find support through the college’s Employee Assistance Program

As Chancellor of Austin Community College District, I want you to know that ACC stands by you. I am proud of our Riverbat community and the care you give one another. It is a responsibility that falls on each of us. ACC will do all it can to support you along the way.  


Richard M. Rhodes, Ph.D.


Austin Community College District

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