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Friday, June 21
The Indiana Daily Student


Thank you, Mr. Love

IU will lose a valued and impassioned staff member in November.

After a decade of serving as director of the Office of Diversity Education, Eric Love will leave IU to take on a new position at the University of Notre Dame.

According to the Indiana Daily Student article that ran Oct. 8, Love said he was not seeking a new job, but rather was approached by Notre Dame about serving as the director of staff of diversity and inclusion.

After consideration, Love accepted the position.

Now, many students might think that this isn’t really important news.

An IU staff member is leaving for a different job at another university and that’s pretty typical. The difference, however, is in how IU reacted to Love’s offer from Notre Dame.

Love said he reached out to the Office of the Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Multicultural Affairs to negotiate and discuss the issue in person. However, a DEMA official responded, thanking Love for his service and saying “they didn’t want to stand in his way.”

Though I’ve only met Love a handful of times, I can confidently say that he’s made an impact on the students of this campus and enabled cultural change on a level that defies belief.

His openness to students, knowledge on inclusion and confidence in addressing campus issues are all immense contributions to this campus.

It is clear to me that DEMA’s commitment to maintaining extraordinary staff, and thus their commitment to inclusion and social advocacy itself, is faulty and unstable.

While I’m certain that DEMA operates daily to help move forward the ideal of an equitable campus environment, their actions show, to me, a level of inconsistency.

You cannot let another school steal a valued staff member who has served a decade as an important resource and, oftentimes, a friend to students and staff alike. Apparently DEMA also understands how this looks to students, as they refused to respond to requests for comments regarding their decision not to negotiate with Love.

Love’s role at IU is specialized in the idea that he’s served a decade at the same institution, learning the problems that students face and addressing them, sometimes going against the administration to do so.

“Eric Love has made a significant difference on campus for both students and peers,” said Barry Magee, Residential Programs and Services assistant director of diversity education.

“He committed his vast energy and time to bringing students from many different backgrounds together around issues of diversity and social justice, particular those issues that affected the daily lives of our students.

Currently, IU is 72-percent white, 19-percent domestic minority and 9-percent international students.

As a university that has such a skewed enrollment demographic breakdown, we need competent, experienced inclusion and diversity staff members, and those staff members need to be acclimated to the culture and background of IU.

Love still stands as an exemplary staff member for all these reasons and more. His innovative programming, dedication to student concerns and friendly, open demeanor all add to the fact he is an outstanding member of our community and a great man.

I’d like to personally thank Love for his service and express how much of a loss his transfer to Notre Dame will be for IU and how much of a gain it will be for Notre Dame.

DEMA should have worked harder to keep you here, Love.

You’re at least owed its time and effort.

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