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Terrorist attacks effect Quinnipiac Community
sday. Students trudging off to class, thinking of last minute excuses as to why they didn’t get their assignments completed. Unbeknownst to them, two planes were crashing through the World Trade Center, less than 75 miles away in New York City.
Students, faculty and staff were immediately checked for internships and other business that may have taken them to New York City or Washington D.C., according to Lynn Bushnell, Vice President for Public Affairs. No one was found to be in the areas at the time. Classes and activities after 5 p.m. were then suspended the same day.
“The school closed out of concern for our students who were upset,” said Bushnell. “Many people wanted to be with their family and friends. We felt it was important for people to be able to see the news.”
Although the attacks took place an hour away, there was never any threat to Quinnipiac, said John Twining, chief of security.
“I do feel that Sept. 11 was business as usual for those that didn’t have family and friends in New York or near the Pentagon,” said Twining.
In light of the incident, security has tightened around campus, according to Twining. ID cards are increasingly being used for identification and people without decals on their cars are being questioned.
The university has also set up a crisis counseling service in Alumni Hall for those affected directly or indirectly by the attacks. John Morgan, director of public relations, recommends that all students watch the news to keep up with the latest information and take advantage of counseling and the campus ministry if necessary.
Although an unlikely target, Quinnipiac is prepared in the event that similar attacks happen in the future.
“It is impossible to predict or speculate what type of emergency might take place,” said Bushnell. “We have a crisis management plan in place. The safety and security of our students, faculty and staff is paramount and our actions in an emergency would be guided by those sentiments.”
Twining is also confident in the university’s commitment and capability to protect all residents, students and faculty.
“If there were a major emergency, Quinnipiac University is self sufficient, with energy and food,” said Twining. “If the U.S. was attacked I would presume the university would close. I think the security system we have in place is sufficient to maintain the safety of the campus.”
In a prayer letter, available on the university website, President John Lahey asks the members of the Quinnipiac community to remember the diversity of the campus and surrounding areas.
“We must not fall prey to the same irrational hatred that has caused this terrible tragedy,” said Lahey. “Please join me in ensuring that Quinnipiac remains a safe and secure environment for all of us.”