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Posted on February 21, 2013 | 11:23 a.m.

Fielding Graduate University President Takes Leadership Role in Gun Violence Initiative

Source: Hilary Edwards for Fielding Graduate University

Late last year, Fielding Graduate University President Richard Meyers became one of the first university presidents to sign an open letter, written on behalf of College Presidents for Gun Safety, addressed to the nation’s policymakers urging the timely passage of gun safety legislation.

Richard Meyers
Richard Meyers

Since its release, the letter and accompanying petition have been signed by more than 350 higher-education leaders.

While President Meyers was in Washington, D.C., last week for the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities National Conference, he attended a press conference with Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, and had the opportunity to speak to personally, as well as Mayors Against Illegal Guns, the executive committee of the American Association of Universities, the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators and the United States Student Association.

President Meyers was one of approximately 100 college and university presidents who attended the press conference as a show of force.

In addition to attending the press conference, President Meyers also spent time visiting with congressional representatives and participated in a collaborative meeting with Mayors Against Illegal Guns, a group that is coordinated out of New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s office in New York.

President Meyers agreed to serve as a liaison to the national movement on behalf of leaders from California independent colleges. To this end, he plans to actively work to increase the number of university presidents supporting the gun control legislation in California and beyond, so that we may reach our goal of 1,000 signatories.

Statement from President Meyers

“Once again, gunfire. Once again, a death. Over and over again. Is there any real compelling reason why our society abides to have incidents like yesterday’s Olive Street ambush occur every day in every corner of our country? Just how often are guns used as part of a militia to protect us from outside foreign aggressors? After all, that’s the core reason for the right to bear arms. We live in a violent society that keeps finding reasons for justifying violence. I’m appalled! All of us need to do something to end violence and curb our hate. Well, I’m trying to do something about it ...”

— Hilary Edwards is the manager of university relations for Fielding Graduate University.

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