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Announcing a Winthrop House Climate Review

Dear Winthrop House community,

Following the announcement that Faculty Dean Ron Sullivan, Jr. would represent Harvey Weinstein as a member of his legal defense team, the College heard from a significant number of members of the Winthrop House community expressing a wide range of concerns about the impact of this decision on the support that students can expect to receive in the Winthrop community, and concerns about the community’s overall climate. 

As Dean of the College, one of my highest priorities is to ensure that the support students receive in their residential communities upholds our institutional commitment to their well-being. 

When climate concerns arise in a faculty-led unit, the College and the FAS have procedures in place to gather additional information to assess the situation and to provide confidentiality to those participating in the information gathering process. In this situation, we would like to have a more complete understanding of the current environment at Winthrop House. To that end, I am appointing Tom Dingman, the former Dean of Freshmen, to lead a climate review. The review will provide opportunities for individuals or groups of students and House staff to share their perspectives. The information gathered during these discussions will be anonymized and presented in aggregate form only. The Office of Institutional Research will also administer a climate survey that protects the anonymity of the participants. Your participation in this process is strictly voluntary. The collected information will be compiled and given me so that we can take actions, as appropriate. Your participation will determine what information we receive from this process, and I hope that we will have the benefit of your views.

Please expect further information from Tom Dingman who will provide you detailed instructions for how we will be gathering this information. 

Warmly,
 
Rakesh Khurana                         
Danoff Dean of Harvard College