Barnard President Beilock and the Office of University Life shared resources for students to cope with the guilty verdict of Derek Chauvin in emails tonight.

Content Warning: Mentions of police brutality. 

After Derek Chauvin was pronounced guilty of the murder of George Floyd this afternoon, President Beilock sent an email to the Barnard student body acknowledging the significance of the verdict and encouraging students to take time to remember and reflect upon the case. Included in the email was a list of resources and processing spaces available to students in the coming week.

President Beilock encouraged students to “remember the fullness” of George Floyd’s Life and emphasized Barnard’s role as an institution in combatting racism and fighting for justice. She reminded students that this single verdict does not negate the ongoing problem of police brutality, mentioning the deaths of Adam Toledo and Daunte Wright, which occurred during Chauvin’s trial. 

Finally, President Beilock included a number of processing spaces, meant as a resource for students feeling overwhelmed and seeking extra support. These student processing spaces will be held on April 21 and 22. There will also be a virtual event this Thursday featuring a conversation with the Minneapolis Chapter NAACP President, Angela Rose Myers (‘18), and Director of Community Engagement and Inclusion Cammie Jones. 

An email from President Beilock along with an email from the Office of University Life offering Columbia Health counseling services and CUIMC counseling services to students can be found below. 

Email sent from President Sian Beilock and DEI Vice President Ariana González Stokas to Barnard students on April 20 at 7:01 pm EST:

Dear Barnard Community,

As we absorb today’s verdict in Minneapolis and all that it means, we write to encourage you all to pause to remember George Floyd’s life and to remember the fullness of a person’s life and all that is lost when a life is needlessly cut short. We keep in mind his family and friends and all who continue to grieve.

We receive today’s news, too, as a reminder that a single verdict does not alter the pattern we have seen continuing in the deaths of Adam Toledo and Daunte Wright, even as the Chauvin trial was underway. At Barnard, we have a commitment, through our research and teaching, to understanding systems that give rise to injustice and to reckon with a history of anti-blackness and racism. As a community and an institution, we also must be relentless in our efforts to contribute to real change. Moments like this remind us of the importance of the ideas and voices nurtured here.

Right now, we urge you to care for and support one another. We can each participate in imagining and practicing a world where there are other alternatives to violence and to harm. We welcome you, too, to engage in the programming outlined below and to take advantage of the support Barnard offers. This is just one moment among many as we, at Barnard, collectively work to eradicate discrimination and live out our core values.

With care,

Sian Leah Beilock, President

Ariana González Stokas, Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

We offer the following events, resources, and supports over the coming days:

Virtual Events:

  • Thursday, April 22, 7-9 p.m. EDT: Conversation with Angela Rose Myers ’18, NAACP President, Minneapolis Chapter, and Cammie Jones, Barnard College Executive Director of Community Engagement and Inclusion
    • We invite you to join us for a Community Conversation: Processing the Trial of Derek Chauvin with Minneapolis NAACP President Angela Rose Myers ’18, this Thursday, April 22, at 7 p.m. EDT on Zoom.
    • During this discussion-based conversation, we will talk with Angela about the Chauvin trial, contextualize this racial justice moment, and provide perspective as a community activist on the ground in Minneapolis. Attendees will have the opportunity to ask questions. Additionally, participants are invited to join campus members who will hold space and use restorative processing to discuss the impacts of the trial on our community and ourselves. Conversation from 7 to 8 p.m., and restorative processing from 8 to 9 p.m. For any questions, email REGISTER.
  • Fridays, 2-3 p.m. EDT: Spiritual Wellbeing in the Midst of Anxiety and Conflict: A Space to Listen, Share, and Reflect. REGISTER.

Processing Spaces:

  • Wednesday, April 21, 1 p.m. EDT: Community Listening Session #1
    • Facilitated by Deshawn Cook and Hilary Colenso to talk, process, and discuss well-being in this moment.
  • Wednesday, April 21, 2 p.m. EDT, Community Listening Session #2
    • Lehman Auditorium (Altschul 202) Facilitated by Deshawn Cook and Jennifer Nival to talk, process, and discuss well-being in this moment. REGISTER
  • Thursday, April 22, 1 p.m. EDT, Community Listening Session for BIPOC-identifying students
    • Facilitated by Deshawn Cook and Christy DaBreo-Otero to talk, process, and discuss well-being specifically for BIPOC students.
  • Faculty/Staff Forum/Processing Space
    • Monday, April 26, time TBD
    • Wednesday, April 28, 12 noon EDT, BIPOC Employee Resource Group. Please find the Zoom link in your portal. Email: with questions.

Counseling resources for the Barnard Community:

The Employee Assistance Program (EAP) provides short-term counseling and referral for employees and their families. All benefit-eligible employees and their dependents are able to use the college-sponsored EAP services.

As always, we offer space for support and reflection through the Rosemary Furman Counseling Center.

Facts About the Trial

Explaining the Charges (KTSP Minneapolis)

The State of Minnesota vs. Derek Chauvin case documents (Minnesota Judicial Branch)

Email sent from Student Affairs Vice President Joseph Greenwell and Student Life Associate Vice President Ixchel Rosal on April 20 at 6:25 pm EST:

Dear Students,

Today, many of us are reflecting on the results of the trial of former police officer Derek Chauvin, who was found guilty of all charges in the murder of George Floyd, which changed the world dramatically less than one year ago. Mr. Floyd’s murder is only one of many moments of racial injustice before and since, but it prompted a global racial reckoning to stand publicly in support of Black lives, and to demand a more just, equitable society. This movement was built on a centuries old struggle for racial justice and equality, which continues today.

The verdict today is but one step in this long journey towards racial justice. As a University community, we have a role to play in that progress, individually and as a collective. We will continue to reaffirm the University’s work to fulfill its commitment to anti-racism, and to foster an environment in which each of us can belong, thrive and contribute to our fullest potential.

This trial has brought about stress for many. As always, there are Columbia resources available to you, including virtual health and counseling services (Morningside and CUIMC), and support from Religious Life. We also invite you to stay connected to the Columbia community by working with us to continue to build an inclusive community for all.


Joseph Defraine Greenwell, Ed.D.

Vice President for Student Affairs

Office of University Life

Gender Pronouns: He/Him/His

Ixchel Rosal

Associate Vice President for Student Life

Office of University Life

Gender Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

Barnard Hall via Bwog Archives