Michigan State University community grapples with aftermath of campus shooting

Students and faculty said moving forward won’t be easy
Published: Feb. 16, 2023 at 6:36 PM EST
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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - Michigan State University’s Interim President, Teresa K. Woodruff, shared her thoughts on the difficulties of moving forward and returning to campus after Monday’s mass shooting.

“We know as a campus that we have hard work ahead of us,” Woodruff said. “Moving forward won’t be easy.”

Related: Timeline of events in Michigan State University shooting

After a gunman fired deadly shots on MSU’s campus, the Spartan community said they’re left feeling numb and returning to campus doesn’t feel right just yet.

“People should be able to leave their kid at a university and feel safe that they’re going to be OK,” said senior Nia Skinner-Miller.

Brian Fraser, Alexandria Verner and Arielle Anderson, all undergraduate students at Michigan State University, were killed and five other students were hospitalized in critical condition. One victim is recovering, authorities said.

“The day that the shooter came and took so much from us also took our sense of safety,” said Board of Trustees Chair, Rema Vassar.

Empathizing with students while still processing the mass shooting, Woodruff said they are working out the details of how the rest of the school year will look.

“We’re considering all options for the manner of which we continue the continuity of education, research, and outreach on this campus,” Woodruff said. “We’ve been talking about places and spaces and where education will continue and certainly those two buildings are central to those conversations.”

Students said they can’t imagine returning to campus – let alone Berkey Hall and the Student Union where people were shot.

“We’re never going to feel like we truly felt before this happened,” said Junior student, Hudson Urea.

And the university said they are listening. Interim President Woodruff said,

“I believe we are a strong community and we will not allow a single individual to take our university from us and we heard that loud and clear from many of our students,” Woodruff said. “We are still processing.”

The MSU Board of Trustees said in a statement: “Our hearts go out to the victims and families of this senseless tragedy. Thank you to MSU, local, state, and national law enforcement agencies and first responders who worked to protect our MSU community. We thank our counseling service providers who will work to bring calm and care to everyone on campus in the coming days and weeks. In the difficult days to come, the MSU Board of Trustees are united to heal our university and the entire Spartan community.”


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