Students aware of safety precautions needed on college campuses

Many seniors are leaving in a few months to go to college and, with that, they gain independence and are forced to really think about personal safety.  College campuses may be fun with all the parties and hangouts, but they may not always be safe. 

   On Thursday February 16, 2023, at Michigan State University, three college students were shot and killed, 5 others were wounded. The names of the students that were killed are Arielle Anderson, 19; Brian Fraser, 20; and Alexandria Verner, also 20. Professor Diaz was teaching in room 114 when the gunman stepped into the classroom and started firing. He was carrying lots of ammunition with him. He fired at least 15 shots at the students in room 114 and the rest was for when the police caught him. As the police closed in on him, he said nothing to the officers before he shot and killed himself. These students and professors will forever remember this day.       “The tragedy will leave a lasting impact, there will never be a return to normal,” Michigan State undergraduate student body president Jo Kovach said. All of this information and more is on the website CNN, named Michigan State university mass shooting. 

   Students might be excited for college and ready to go, but are they prepared for things that might go wrong? This is a question asked a lot. Seniors tend to get so excited to leave high school, that they forget that bad things can happen and they need to be prepared. 

   Some students recognize that their personal safety will have to be something that requires even more focus as they get out on their own. 

   “Always be aware of your surroundings and trust your gut,” senior Ashley Spry said. 

   “ I think that everyone should carry pepper spray or something that they can carry to protect themselves. Always have a cell phone near you to be able to call 911 at any time you feel unsafe,” senior Abby Dendish said.  

   Some safety necessities that students might need to consider bringing to college are pepper spray, protection alarm, first aid kit, etc. 

  Students preparing to move away for college recognize that the size of the campus does not matter when it comes to being diligent about safety.

   “I don’t think either (large or small campus) is necessarily safer,” Spry said. 

   “I think that size doesn’t matter when it comes to safety. There is crime everywhere you go no matter what. I feel like you can’t let your guard down when it comes to safety,“ Dendish said.

    The likelihood of being caught up in a school shooting is less than other risks that can happen in college. Other risks include sexual assault and rape (13%), alcohol/drug abuse (37%), overdose (44%), and suicide (approx. 1,100 indiv.)  

   Students who are about to go into college are thinking about concerns that they have and what they may expect. 

   “I believe that college campuses try their hardest to keep their students safe but dangerous situations can still happen. Situations can happen anywhere no matter where you are. There are things that worry me as I go into college such as if I am approached by someone who has intentions of endangering me. I hope that I have the ability to defend myself. There was a time while I was at work that I was approached by someone who could have harmed me, I felt unsafe and I froze up and my mistake was that I did not call the police. No matter what, if you ever feel unsafe call the police immediately,” Dendish said.