There were reports of off-campus gunshots at Oakwood Townhouses Sunday, Nov. 20. Students were not alerted of the incident until nearly 36 hours later.
There was an active shooter situation at Ohio State University (OSU) Monday, Nov. 28. The suspect turned out to be a student armed with a knife.
Students at OSU were alerted right away via Twitter, text and other forms of communication. The tweet read: Run. Hide. Fight.
To some Ferris students this might be alarming, and they might feel unsafe and not protected by Ferris officials. However, there are major differences between the two incidents.
“Nothing was reported to the Sherriff’s Department the night of the incident at Oakwood. It was reported the next day, which is why the alert was sent out the day after the incident,” said Captain Jim Cook from Ferris’ Department of Public Safety (DPS).
According to Cook, shots are heard during the midnight shift all the time, but officials cannot send out an alert unless something has been reported to the department.
“We would have responded the same way Ohio State University did in a situation on campus. We have been doing active shooter training in this department since 1992. We train with the city, county and state so that any officer in the area can form a team,” Cook said.
According to the students who were interviewed, none of them know how to act if there were to be an active shooter at Ferris.
“I have no idea what I would do if there was an active shooter on campus. I do not know how to handle that situation,” said Ferris product design freshman Jaclyn Vanderploeg. “I think what I would do depends on where I was at. If I were in my room, I would stay there and let others know what is going on in case they do not know.”
Ferris supply chain management freshman Griffin Petrlich said he would report the incident as soon as possible to higher authority so they could send an alert out to warn people.
“I would head to the nearest building if there were to be an active shooter on campus and make sure that I am safe,” said Ferris pre-science freshman Gwynneth Coselman.
According to Vanderploeg, Ferris does a good job of letting students know what is going on around campus by sending email notifications to students.
According to DPS, any student, student group, class, faculty or staff can request training on how to handle an active shooter situation. The training can be scheduled ahead of time and is free of charge.