Lansing Community College students express their concerns about the possibility of shootings on campus.
Shootings at colleges and universities are becoming more frequent. Seventeen of the last 44 school shootings have occurred in college and universities, according to Demand Action, a project that promotes gun control.
There has been a recent spike in school shootings the past few weeks. According to The New York Times, the Virginia Tech shooting in 2007. which killed 32 people, was “the deadliest shooting rampage in American history.” What is actually being done to prevent such shootings?
LCC has its own police force. According to the LCC police website, the department is run by the college and abides by local and state laws. The department’s goal is to maintain student’s safety.
LCC’s emergency manual, available online, offers tips and procedures for most situations. Situations from a simple lockdown to a campus-wide shutdown are covered.
“The best tool to curb/prevent these type of incidents is teaching people to recognize the early warning signs and for them to say something when they see the warning signs,” said Sgt. Rodney Bahl.
LCC’s Behavior Intervention Team relies on student referrals to keep track of people who may cause problems. Bahl said after concern with a student arises, information is collected on the student.
“We come up with a plan to intervene and get the student of concern the assistance they need to prevent them from hurting themselves or others,” he said.
Cadet David Harris of the LCC Police department said LCC has never faced an active shooter. “There is always room for improvement in our force though,” he said.
If a shooter were to appear on campus, students wonder if they will know what to do or how to act.
When asked about a shooter situation, LCC sophomore Ryan McCready, a music production major, said, “I’ve never had to do a practice lockdown or shooter situation. I don’t know that I would even know what to do other than panic.”
“I would feel more comfortable if they took a day in class to actually discuss what to do,” McCready said.
There was a recent shooting at neighboring school, Michigan State University, on Feb. 1. A 20-year-old male was shot and killed right on River St. near Cedar Village apartments next to campus, according to a report on Fox News 17.
“We are working on a way to ensure what happened at MSU does not occur here,” said Harris. “That tragedy can be prevented if safety procedures are enforced well enough.”