I previously sent an announcement that the Groundbreaking Ceremony for the Willowbrook Mile will be taking place at the College on Wednesday, Sept. 14.

Willowbrook State School, which operated on these grounds from 1947 through 1987, came under national scrutiny for its deplorable conditions emanating from the systematic warehousing of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities through institutionalization. Efforts leading to the eventual closing of Willowbrook collectively represent a seminal moment in United States history leading to greater protection of the rights of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

The Willowbrook Mile involves the creation of a pathway through existing walkways around the campus and neighboring properties marked by commemorative stations providing important information about the Willowbrook State School. In honor of the Groundbreaking Ceremony, this week, the College is installing temporary stations throughout the Willowbrook Mile to provide the community with a glimpse of what the project will look like upon completion.

I hope you will take the time to visit some of the stations and reflect upon the history and legacy of the Willowbrook State School.