Lorna Finnegan, PhD, RN, FAAN
Dean, Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing
Sam J. Marzo, MD, Dean and Chief Diversity Officer,
Stritch School of Medicine
Elaine H. Morrato, DrPH MPH, Founding Dean and Professor,
Parkinson School of Health Sciences and Public Health
Loyola University Chicago

Message from November 4, 2020

As the Deans of the Schools of NursingMedicine, and Health Sciences and Public Health, we recognize racial injustice and the associated health disparities it causes as a public health crisis.  In short, racism is a public health issue.

We teach, research, lead, and advocate in solidarity with our respective national associations (American Association of Colleges of Nursing; the American Association of Medical Colleges and the American Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health) that have recognized the importance of diversity, equity, and inclusion in health care and related fields.

Each of us is working within our individual school communities – students, faculty, and staff -- to develop curricula and cultures that are more reflective of this country’s changing demographics and the world beyond.  Our mission as a Jesuit Catholic university calls us to do nothing less. 

As Dr. Rooney and Provost Grzywacz noted in their September 25 email to the Loyola Community, the University’s commitment to these issues will be channeled through its Anti-Racism Initiative, which

“touches all aspects of [Loyola’s] mission. The Initiative includes student and faculty recruitment and retention, the campus experience, pedagogy, and curriculum. The Anti-Racism Initiative also encompasses investments in interdisciplinary research and community engagement to bring new insights and hopes for solutions to deep-seated inequities.”

We are invested in Dr. Rooney’s and Provost Grzywacz’s approach and commitment. We invite every member of the Health Sciences Community to contribute to the critical conversations and the important work we must pursue to create more just and equitable educational institutions and health systems.  

Our university and schools have a proven record of educating for justice on behalf of people who are marginalized and disenfranchised.  But the current moment demands us to do better in both acknowledging the particularly insidious history and presence of racism in the United States and working to remedy its disastrous and ongoing ramifications to human health and well-being.