Tuesday, April 17, 2007

north texas colleges and universities respond to the virginia tech tragedy

Yesterday and today, a local show of support for Virginia Tech from North Texas area colleges and universities came in the form of statements from presidents and chancellors, vigils and more.

Along with emergency preparedness information, Southern Methodist University offered this statement: "All of us in higher education share the grief of the Virginia Tech family and send our heartfelt condolences to all those touched by this tragedy."

The following is excerpted from a statement released by Dr. Wright Lassiter, Jr., the Chancellor of the Dallas County Community College District.:
In today’s often-violent world, college campuses are a refuge for many, and a safe place to learn; however, our colleges are a microcosm of the larger world, and we must be prepared to handle the effects of that world on those who either learn or work within our institution. Would we trade the freedom that an open campus provides for learning and growth and replace it with security measures that hamper access and education? Such a closed environment is contradictory to the open exchange of ideas and the world of higher education.

With emergency plans in place and proper training for law enforcement personnel, we hope to meet challenges from the outside world when, and if, they occur. In the meantime, we must be vigilant, observant and aware of our surroundings.
Students at the University of Texas at Dallas can pick up black ribbons at the student government office and other locations on campus. More information about the organized efforts at UTD can be found here.

The University of Dallas held special services today. Members of the University of North Texas community have been invited to attend a vigil held tomorrow morning, led by President Gretchen M. Bataille.

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