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Supporting One Another in the Midst of Tragedy

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Jeremy Haefner

Letter  •

Dear DU Family,

It is with heartfelt concern for our community that I send this message today. Many of us continue to try to find ways to cope with the senseless violence we continue to face as a nation. A festival in Northern California; Walmart stores in Mississippi and Texas; and an entertainment district in Ohio. All four of these locations were the scenes of senseless shootings in recent weeks, leaving at least 36 people dead and 66 wounded.

My heart goes out to the families of those who were killed and to the wounded in Gilroy, California; Southaven, Mississippi; El Paso, Texas; and Dayton, Ohio. These brutal murders, which are the result of hate, fear, and division, have no place in our society and will not be tolerated in our community. In the case of the El Paso massacre, an online post made by the attacker prior to the shooting outlined his racist intentions and ideology. The rising epidemic of white supremacy and its hate-filled, violent eruptions is alarming and demands we work even more diligently to ensure we live up to our values of inclusivity, equity, and social justice.

Finding ways of coping and caring are also important; it is vital that we do not become detached or disconnected. In times when we feel helpless, it is particularly important for us to come together as a community and lean on one another.

Unfortunately, this almost certainly will not be the last time our community will be faced with the horrible aftermath of another senseless mass shooting. One of the things I do when I’m faced with a particularly difficult situation is to look for ways to help. Below are some ways you can help the families of the victims of the most recent shootings in El Paso and Dayton.

I challenge all of us to look for ways we can provide support for one another and find constructive ways to deal with our pain.  Whether you’re a student or a faculty or staff member, there are individuals on campus who can help you. Please don’t hesitate to use the resources available to you.


Jeremy Haefner

Ways to Help Dayton and El Paso Victims

The Dayton Foundation has set up a fund to support those affected by the shooting. You can contribute to the Dayton Oregon District Tragedy Fund. Click here to donate. Once your transaction is completed, the Dayton Foundation will mail you a letter acknowledging your contribution. All contributions are tax-deductible.

El Paso
The El Paso Community Foundation has requested financial donations for the shooting victims. Click here for information. Also, an El Paso Victims Relief Fund was created by the Paso del Norte Community Foundation. Find more information here

DU Community Resources

Human Resources and Inclusive Community (HRIC), is available for a wide range of assistance and services for all employees of the University of Denver.

The Office of Equal Opportunity & Title IX, in collaboration with University partners, foster an environment of equal opportunity and equity and is a resource for students, faculty, and staff in all aspects of educational programming and employment. If members of the community experience harassment or discrimination at any time, they are encouraged to submit a report with our office. Community members can also contact our office directly at: or by phone at 303-871-7016. 

The University Ombuds Office is a confidential and informal resource that provides assistance to faculty, staff, students and their families. The Ombuds can help people make sense of challenging situations and connect you with the University's policies, procedures and resources.

EAP SupportLinc is the University’s employee assistance program. DU employees and their family members can access counseling and receive professional referrals to other experts. Call 1-888-881-LINC [5462] or log in to the SupportLinc website with username: universityofdenver. 

The Office of Diversity and Inclusion (ODI) is responsible for addressing Inclusive Excellence and diversity matters that impact the academic experience at DU for faculty and students. The best way to reach ODI is via email at

Student Support Services

The Cultural Center is an intersectional and all-inclusive space offering support for the many aspects of students’ identities, including programs and services related to race and ethnicity, gender and sexuality, and religion and spirituality. Connect with The Cultural Center at

The Health & Counseling Center (HCC) provides many medical and mental health services, including crisis and after-hours support. All University of Denver students have access to crisis services at the HCC, regardless of insurance coverage. The Health & Counseling Center is located at the Ritchie Center, 2240 E. Buchtel Blvd., Suite 3N and can be reached via phone at 303-871-2205. 

Student Outreach & Support is a University resource where trained staff members ensure that students are connected to appropriate campus resources, have a plan of action to meet their goals, and learn how to navigate challenging situations. Activate these services by completing a Pioneers Care report at or by calling 303-871-2400.