The weekly student newspaper of Bucknell University

The Bucknellian

The weekly student newspaper of Bucknell University

The Bucknellian

The weekly student newspaper of Bucknell University

The Bucknellian

2024 Commencement Student Speaker: Lea Tarzy
Alexandra Slofkiss: 2024 Commencement Soloist
Outstanding Senior Award: Bernadette Maramis
Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion: Gloria Sporea

Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion: Gloria Sporea

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Excellence in Athletics Award: Meghan Quinn

Excellence in Athletics Award: Meghan Quinn

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Excellence in the Arts Award: Joselyn Busato

Excellence in the Arts Award: Joselyn Busato

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Students share experiences of Friday’s active shooter alert

Charlotte+Olin+%2F+The+Bucknellian
Charlotte Olin / The Bucknellian

It’s harrowing to experience something we’ve prepped for nearly our entire educational experience in the form of drills. I felt equally relieved and disgusted once the all clear was called, even more so when it was revealed that the whole thing was a hoax. I find it terrifying and yet a product of our time that someone would falsify an active shooter threat, knowing how much damage it would cause to any campus. It’s strange to process the grief and fear around something that for all intents and purposes, was real in the moment, but wasn’t actually real in the sense of having a threat there. How does that work? We feel lucky, perhaps, but not completely. How does the strangeness and latent fear dissolve?” ~Zoe Kemp ’24

“The absolute fear I felt after receiving the call from Public Safety was something I never hoped to know. While I was off campus, I knew some of my friends were on campus, locked in the ELC with friends or alone in their rooms. For a moment, I thought I would never see them again. I am grateful that the situation did not fulfill my initial fears, but I will carry the weight of the moment I answered that Public Safety call for the rest of my life.” ~Sarah Preston ’25

“I just found it weird how I didn’t cry or panic like I thought I would. I guess I just thought about it in the past, and so I had a plan of action. When I first got the emergency texts and messages from various group chats to “get inside” and “seek shelter,” I jumped out of my bed, barricaded my door with the desk chair and my backpack, and immediately ran to my closet. And I just sat there, texting and calling loved ones. I never cried or panicked- I just sat there and felt my body shake uncontrollably. I wasn’t processing anything that was happening, and I still don’t think I fully have. I shouldn’t have already thought about what I would do if there was an active shooter. This is the world we live in, but it shouldn’t be.” ~Claire Jenkins ’25

I hear everyone saying this wasn’t real, it’s could have been worse. While I know it’s was a hoax, it felt real. My panic while I was locked out of my dorm was real. The fear of someone approaching me and it may be my last moment was real.

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Amidst the frantic chaos that erupted, I found myself stranded outside my dormitory, gripped by a visceral terror that transcended the absence of an actual shooter. The deafening wail of silence echoed through the air, amplifying the dread that consumed me as I futilely tried to gain entry. In that suffocating moment, the chilling reality of the situation enveloped me, driving home the horrifying truth that even in the absence of physical danger, the terror I felt was all too real.” ~Gloria Sporea ’24

It felt surreal for me. I didn’t have time to process everything because I was in Karate practice at that time, and we weren’t aware of it until my friend came in and informed us. Honestly, I was super scared since it was my first time experiencing this negative side of America. Although it was reported to be a hoax in the end, I still feel traumatized by this encounter.” ~Cheatra Chheang ’27

I was in the KLARC when it happened so me and a group of about ten others ran to find somewhere to hide. We hid in a big janitor closet and had to barricade the doors with whatever we could find. It was awful. It was an hour with no updates and we were all scared. Everyone was on the phone with their family.” ~Capri Mills ’26

I was on the way home when I saw the notification, so I panicked while I was driving and hit a deer.” ~Katie Loew ’25

“Just because it was a hoax doesn’t mean it wasn’t terrifying. PSAFE did a great job all things considered, but some more coordination would have helped.” ~Eli McGinnis ’27

Firstly, the notion by some that since it ended up being a hoax, it’s fine. We’re fine, and we should feel as such. However, the event still sticks with you. It also very much felt real in the moment, and so though there was no actual threat, our feelings were still real and should be recognized as such. There might as well have been an actual shooter with the fear invoked in us within those 45 minutes…

Additionally, Bucknell’s security measures. Be better. A friend of mine mentioned how in her high school, she knew exactly what to do in the event of an active shooter no matter what room she was in. Here at Bucknell, she realized in that moment that she had absolutely no idea what to do in the event of an active shooter–in any room. In any building. Least of all the caf… Bucknell needs to establish a clear plan for students on what they should do in the event that they’re in the caf, the library, any public space, or just a space with unsuitable refuge. The plan can’t simply be to ‘run.’

My mother wasn’t answering her phone throughout the whole ordeal. I had made a groupchat with both my mother and my father to keep them both in the loop before noticing that my mother wasn’t responding to any of my messages. I was decently upset about this, as anyone who believes they’re under the threat of a real active shooter who doesn’t get to hear the comforting words from their mother would be. She didn’t reach out to me until two hours after the fact. I picked up the phone and was met with her frightened sobs. I told her not to worry, that I was okay. I wasn’t okay, though. Not really. The thought of life being so fragile that you can miss someone’s goodbye from not looking at your phone for 45 minutes terrified me to my core. ” ~Abby Campion ’27

“I find it quite distressing how people seem to be brushing off the lockdown because it turned out to be a hoax. For at least an hour, there was no reason to think the threat was anything but real. And for Public Safety to push people out of the ELC (and not everyone, mind you; they forgot about the Bison workers, etc.), just to take away key card access to buildings across campus before all of those people could get to safety was a dangerous decision. In a country where school shootings averaged out to be about one per day in 2023, there is no reason for any academic institution to think they are safe for any reason. Bucknell should have been more prepared.” ~Spencer Howell ’24

I’d like to start by saying I’m appreciative of the first responders that assisted with the situation on Friday... I was in a dark room in the ELC and the officers that cleared the building instructed us to return to our dorms before the “all clear” message was sent out AND before our card access was reinstated. I’m fortunate that a roommate was able to let me into the building, but this could have been a serious hazard if this wasn’t a hoax. I put my trust in the officers that it was safe for me to enter, but I could have been jeopardizing my roommate and everyone else’s safety in the building had there been a real active shooter. The emergency alert system was effective, but public safety MUST use this more frequently in a real situation rather than post on the university’s social media. I knew some students on campus who only found out we were in a lockdown from hearing from their parents after seeing a post on social media. Additionally, posting an address for a safe space for students was extremely dangerous and could have been horrific in the case of an actual shooter.” ~Henry Martin ’25

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