None of us needs many words to decry the hatred and bigotry on display in the name of nationalism that has been shown across the country. But I feel with great conviction that we at CCBC are in a unique position to do something about it. Each year we touch the lives of some 63,000 students. We give them the skills and knowledge they need to achieve a better life. We also strive to give them the values and opportunities they need to become citizens capable of building a better America.

At CCBC, our students, faculty and staff are a microcosm of the diverse communities that surround us. We value that diversity as a strength not as a weakness; it is a bond that strengthens community rather than dilutes it.

We—all 1,108 community colleges across the country—are Democracy’s colleges. Because of the people we serve, ours is the real equity agenda. We have the capacity to join our 1,107 community college colleagues across the country to be a bastion of strength against the hate, bigotry, and violence by which our country is riven. It is through unity, not division, that will heal our nation’s wounds.