Carnegie Mellon University
April 20, 2021

Verdict in Chauvin Case

Dear Members of the CMU Community, 

As many of you are aware, a Minnesota jury has found Derek Chauvin guilty of murder in the death of George Floyd last May. This verdict is a milestone in our nation’s ongoing effort to dismantle racism and ensure equal justice under the law. Nearly a year after Mr. Floyd’s death, we are still collectively grieving this trauma and the loss of his life. Our thoughts remain with his loved ones. 

We must acknowledge the disproportionate effect that violent events like these have on Black and African Americans, as well as the larger BIPOC community. Even as we awaited the outcome of this trial, tragedies have occurred in Chicago and Minneapolis and continue to inflict deep wounds on our society. To all those who must endure the agony of losing loved ones or who live in fear because of the color of their skin or identity, the CMU community continues to stand in solidarity, and to advocate for urgent and meaningful change, with you.  

As we absorb today’s verdict, I ask each of you to show care and compassion to yourself and to one another. These events can take a toll on our mental, emotional and physical health, so I encourage you to turn to those you find most helpful in times of stress or hardship, such as family, friends, faith leaders, advisors and mentors. If you need to make time for self-care, reflection, conversation, or to check in on friends, you should pause business as usual and do so. As a reminder, Counseling and Psychological Services (CaPS) counselors are available for students, day or night, at 412-268-2922 and the Employee Assistance Program has resources available for faculty and staff. 

While today’s verdict is an important step, we still have a long journey ahead in our painful struggle against systemic racism and injustice. And I continue to find hope in our shared humanity. 


Farnam Jahanian
Henry L. Hillman President’s Chair