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January 12, 2015

Dear University of Miami Family,

Five years ago today the nation of Haiti was ripped apart by a devastating 7.0-magnitude earthquake that killed and injured hundreds of thousands of people and forever changed the lives of millions more, both on the island and in our own South Florida community. Thanks to our longstanding partnerships with individuals and organizations in Haiti, the University of Miami was able to respond swiftly and comprehensively with direly needed assistance.

Today, however, is not only about looking back at the devastation—it is an opportunity to lift our hearts with what has been accomplished in the intervening years and to set our sights on the hard but hopeful road ahead. The University of Miami’s Haiti Special Report is a close look at the amazing work taking place both here and on the island, which involves areas throughout the institution. Our newly launched website at haiti.miami.edu features a special video report and showcases the extraordinary efforts of our faculty, staff, students, and alumni, and, of course, the wonderful Haitians and Haitian-Americans who inspire us with their determination and dignity.

Haiti Special Report Website

I also invite you to attend today’s Haiti Remembrance Ceremony taking place in conjunction with the UM student organization Planet Kreyol at the Student Activities Center at 6 p.m. We will observe a moment of silence at 4:53 p.m., the time at which the earthquake struck, to remember and mourn the loss of so many. Our thoughts especially go to the friends and families of the four students and two professors from our sister school Lynn University who lost their lives that terrible day.

The University of Miami remains a committed partner in support of the resilient and resourceful people of Haiti. We have been honored and humbled to join forces with so many people and institutions in Haiti, South Florida, and across the globe to make a real and lasting impact and a better future for the people of Haiti.

Building a Better U Together
At the U, we transform lives through teaching, research and service

Each one of us is a powerful agent of change—united we are unstoppable. It’s breathtaking to see what we can accomplish when we come together with a common purpose.