University of Maryland staff and faculty are partnering with Black student leaders to boost enrollment of underrepresented communities and push for inclusivity on the campus, university President Darryll Pines announced in a campuswide email Tuesday.

In the email, Pines stressed his commitment to achieving excellence in research, academics, arts and athletics and creating an inclusive, multicultural environment on the campus — priorities he has had since his first day as president.

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“These dual priorities are profoundly and immutably interconnected,” he wrote. “We cannot have excellence without a diverse and inclusive campus.” 

The group — made up of student leaders from 34 organizations that represents Black students — will discuss critical issues and goals for the university, including increasing the number of Black faculty and staff, Pines wrote.

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Additionally, the group will discuss ways to strengthen organizations, programs and initiatives that support Black students, faculty and staff, establishing bias training and honoring the life and legacy of 1st Lt. Richard Collins. 

These objectives will proceed in varying timelines and involve other community members, according to the email. 

“Our willingness to advocate for and to create change is a testament to our shared commitment to inclusive excellence,” Pines wrote in the email.