Vanderbilt condemns ‘deeply disturbing’ white supremacy e-mail sent to students, teachers

Vanderbilt University condemned an e-mail sent to faculty and students Monday night that are racist, vulgar language.


Vanderbilt University condemned a “deeply disturbing” e-mail purportedly promoting white supremacy, which was sent to students, faculty and staff.

The private university in Nashville, Tennessee, said on Twitter the e-mail that Monday night in “racist language and promoted white supremacy” and that it “is inconsistent with our fundamental commitment to promoting an inclusive community and is absolutely unacceptable.”

On the evening of 30 July, some Vanderbilt students, faculty and staff receive a deeply disturbing e-mail that racist language and promoted white supremacy. It is contrary to our fundamental commitment to promoting an inclusive community and is absolutely unacceptable.

— Vanderbilt University (@VanderbiltU) July 31, 2018

“The language and the sentiment is included in this message are horrible and antithetical to our values as a university community,” Provost Susan Wente and Vice Chancellor Tina Smith said in a statement via e-mail Tuesday morning. “We condemn this message and tactics of sowing of distrust, discord, and hatred that work there.

She continued: “equality, diversity and integration are the basis of the values of the Vanderbilt community.”


On Monday night, Vanderbilt NAACP tweeted out a screenshot of the so-called e-mail that resembles spam, with the e-mail addressed to “Your order.” It contained several typos and mistakes, use of caps lock, and bizarre language, such as “White Pride at Vanderbilt and around the world!”

“The white nationalist e-mail blast that is sent to many Black Students, tonight is yet ANOTHER reprehensible display of how racism and hatred is ingrained in Vanderbilt’s culture,” the NAACP chapter as tweeted out, adding, “Now, let’s hope that @VanderbiltU actually take action…”

Smith and Wente said the university’s information technology team is working to identify the source of the e-mail and “to stop the spread of knowledge and that of any other e-mails.”

“The fact that the communication was NOT an official Vanderbilt University e-mail, or correspondence does not diminish the pain that it has caused,” the university wrote. “Again, we condemn this despicable communication and confirm Vanderbilt’s dedication to the success and the positive affirmation of it all.”

The university said that the e-mail contains a link to a virus, but recommends that anyone who does not respond, but instead deletes it.

The Vanderbilt University Police Department is aware of and tracking the issue, according to the school.

Caleb Parke is an associate editor for You can follow him on Twitter @calebparke

Follow us

Don't be shy, get in touch. We love meeting interesting people and making new friends.

Most popular