Dean's Message: Princeton School of Public and International Affairs

Jun 27 2020
Cecilia Elena Rouse, Dean

Dear Community,

I hope you have had to a chance to read President Eisgruber’s message, sharing with the Princeton community that the University Trustees have voted to remove the name “Woodrow Wilson” from our School and rename it the Princeton School of Public and International Affairs.

I am writing to let you know I unequivocally support this decision.

Retiring the name does not take the place of systemic change, but it does signal that we are prepared to do the hard work of confronting racism and other injustices. We have much more to do, and I know all of you stand ready to contribute your time, thoughtfulness, and passion to that effort.

This has been a call from students for many years. I appreciate their activism and vision for a better future that does not tolerate racism, inequality and injustice. I thank them for not giving up.

I have often been asked if not Wilson, then who should the School be named for? I am glad we are not going down that path. Connecting the School to a certain person signals that the School stands for much of what the honoree believes. I feel that for a policy school to be the best, it has to be a place where a true diversity of backgrounds and beliefs exist.

I know we all agree that true equity is a foundational value worth fighting for. I look forward to continuing the hard work.


Cecilia Elena Rouse