May 2, 2024

Dear Members of Our Campus Community,

UC Santa Barbara has a tradition of student engagement and activism in which students exercise their First Amendment while respecting the rights of the entire campus community. We always have emphasized the need for dialogue, conversation, and open communication, recognizing differences of opinion.

Yesterday afternoon, an unpermitted rally took place, which caused some disturbance due mostly to noise. Yesterday morning, an unauthorized “encampment” was set up near North Hall, adjacent to classrooms and academic office buildings. These events followed a day of teach-in and protest activities in the Student Resource Building last Thursday.

We are monitoring these situations carefully in coordination with campus safety personnel, maintaining lines of communication with our students, faculty, and staff to ensure the safety of everyone in our community. We appreciate the good will of those who have counseled the safe and respectful exercise of free expression.

Moving forward, we are willing to work with student groups that wish to protest or express their rights and views peacefully, consistent with law and campus conduct policies, without disrupting or interfering with our core educational and research mission. We must ensure campus safety, and respect the right of everyone on campus to feel safe. Those violating laws and codes of conduct in unsanctioned, illegal, and disruptive activities, whether non-affiliates or members of our campus community, are subject to legal and disciplinary action.

We recognize that the violence and suffering in the Middle East have caused great distress in our campus community and we urgently hope that a peaceful resolution will be found. We remain committed to dialogue and education, especially where there are strongly held and differing views. As a public university, the University of California welcomes regular reviews of its policies and practices; there is much that can be debated with analytic rigor.

Many students who were deprived of their high school graduation ceremonies by the pandemic four years ago are now looking forward to their UCSB Commencement and the culmination of their undergraduate education. We owe it to them to allow them to complete their studies in an environment that supports teaching and learning. We encourage everyone to work together to protect the safety and collegiality of our academic community.

To report antisemitism, Islamophobia, anti-Arab, anti-Black, or other forms of discrimination, follow this link: Reports will be reviewed and investigated, consistent with campus and UC policies, and federal law, and appropriate action will be taken through our established conduct codes and policies to hold responsible individuals accountable.


Henry T. Yang

David Marshall
Executive Vice Chancellor

Margaret Klawunn
Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs

Jeffrey Stewart
Interim Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Garry Mac Pherson
Vice Chancellor for Administrative Services