Statement From Chancellor Gary S. May on Encampment Status June 20

Chancellor Gary S. May issued the following statement today (June 20):

UC Davis is committed to providing a campus that is inclusive and as safe as possible. At the same time, we embrace our responsibility to cultivate an environment that allows the university community to engage in work and activities in accordance with the highest standards of freedom of expression and independent thought.

This commitment has been tested in recent weeks, as students protesting the violence in Gaza set up an encampment at the Quad to call attention to the loss of life and host teach-ins and educational activities. Students remained peaceful throughout the encampment and de-escalated challenging situations.

Today, members of the Davis Popular University for the Liberation of Palestine, or PULP, student-led group completed the voluntary removal of their encampment, including tents, fencing and other materials. 

Since the encampment began May 6, university officials have met with encampment leaders several times to listen and engage in dialogue about the group’s concerns.

The university facilitated a meeting between PULP student leaders and UC Davis Foundation trustees, who provided information about the University of California’s investment principles and processes. In another meeting, representatives of the UC Davis Academic Senate provided insight into the ways faculty research is funded and the autonomy and academic freedom of individual researchers. In another meeting, leaders from the School of Veterinary Medicine shared the history and principles underlying the school’s collaboration with a similar school in Jerusalem.

We remain committed to ongoing discussions with our students, transparency in university operations, and supporting students’ rights to express their viewpoints.

While we decry the loss of innocent life on both sides of this war, including in Israel, we acknowledge the efforts of our students to peacefully protest the humanitarian crisis and staggering loss of life in Gaza, the West Bank and Palestine. Protesting immense human suffering and destruction should not be conflated with hatred or intolerance.

The events of the last several months have put a strain on our campus community. However, as we reach this moment, we are grateful to all who have worked hard to maintain a campus where members of our community can peacefully express themselves. We redouble our commitment to providing a safe environment for all, protecting peaceful free expression, and assuring that our mission of teaching, research and public service continues without disruption.


Gary S. May

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2024 UC Davis Campus Climate Updates

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