Students recount events on campus last night, this morning after Twitter threats
Scenes from campus on Nov. 18, 2015, the morning after a peaceful rally was held and then an anonymous Twitter user made violent threats online. Credit: Rebecca Panico
By: Alyssa Davis | Published on Nov. 18, 2015
Students shared their thoughts about the racially charged Twitter threats and peaceful rally last night, with some feeling safe and others refusing to go to class today.
Olivia Felder recounted what she saw at last night’s peaceful rally which was in support of University of Missouri’s students.
“People were yelling the n-word from the windows at Bartlett Hall,” Felder said about the atmosphere during the rally that took place in the plaza on Tuesday night.
Aida Reyes had more to add about the feel during the night, adding that “death metal music was being blasted from the dorms.”
She went on to say that she heard shouting that included racial slurs and she heard people yelling “all lives [not just black lives] matter.”
Junior Ashley Solla said that there were police escorting people back and forth from the lots to the dorms that night because so many students were leaving campus.
“We all just got back to our room after chapter when we saw the tweets so as soon as we saw them we all left and went to the diner and then everyone else slept elsewhere for the night but I just decided to come back,” Solla said. “A police officer drove me from the parking lot to new upper and then I just slept there. I felt safer there then in the quads. I went to my only class today and 4 people showed up and now I’m at work and no one is here either.”
Some students were too fearful to attend school on Wednesday.
“I didn’t even go to classes,” Michael Gonzales, who dorms, said.
Others believed that education comes before everything else.
“Either way I still have to get my education,” Senior Jawuan Gilliam said. “I was taught nothing stops you from getting your education.”
Some initially viewed the threats as a hoax, like Arielle Baiza, a freshman speech pathology major.
“At first when my friend told me I thought it was a joke then I went online and it was a little scary,” Baiza said.
She still attended her classes as usual.
“I feel pretty safe,” Baiza said. “The police are doing their job. Kean is very diverse so it is really stupid that this is happening.”
Others took it seriously right away, like Jasleen Molina.
“I take it seriously but I feel like the police won’t let anything bad happen,” Molina said.
Molina’s professors did not cancel class, but they sent emails reassuring students that they do not need to come if they feel unsafe.
Her sorority, Theta Phi Alpha, moved its meeting to an off-campus location for tonight because some of the sisters felt unsafe.
Molina stated that some students did not come to campus because they were concerned for their safety, while others didn’t show simply because they did not want to come to class.
Delia Solis, who works at the Rockin’ Joe Cafe at the Union Train Station, which is frequently visited by Kean students and faculty alike, immediately noticed something was askew on-campus in the early morning hours.
“I didn’t see a lot of people getting off the train today (Wednesday),” she said.
Annalise Knudson, Yuri Smishkewych and Daris Mendez contributed to this story.