By Michael Cotton, Currier Times Staff///
Since the recent hate crimes affecting both the Jewish and Black communities took place on campus within the past few weeks, students have actively been keeping their head on a swivel in anticipation of violent acts potentially occurring. Curry College has held various events on campus in an attempt to bring the campus together, such as meetings hosted by Public Safety and the Milton Police Department, as well as two rallies that took place; one last Thursday, and another one on the following day.
According to spectators and faculty members, approximately two-hundred individuals attended the rallies to support those that were affected by the recent hate crimes. The initial rally last Thursday started with a choir in the quad, and was followed by a march that ended at the Student Center. The rally on Friday was just as exciting, as students and faculty members met at the front of the Student Center. Students Chelsey Barker (Senior), Michael Ouellette (Sophomore), and others spoke at this rally and expressed their disgust for the recent acts of hate at Curry College.
Barker believed that the march was, “very informative and uplifting.” She continued by stating, “This type of behavior isn’t tolerated here at Curry College, and although the student responsible hasn’t been caught as of yet, hopefully these marches will help this school make the correct decisions moving forward.”
Last Friday, WMLN (Curry College radio) also contributed to the support of students across campus. WMLN’s Station Manager, Haillie Johnson (Senior), dedicated the entire three hours of her specialty show (4-7pm) to allow Curry College students to come into the station or call in to express how they feel towards everything happening on campus, and/or if they had any information pertaining to the investigation that they would like to come forth with.
According to Johnson, “I want to make it an open conversation about what is going on on campus with these incidents. I want to make it a safe place and for us to do our job as a station to not ignore this… I don’t feel right having a silly show when this is going on. It’s three hours and it’s important to give everyone a voice, especially if you feel as if the school isn’t listening. This is what radio is for.”
Due to recent threats of violence targeting specific dates, many students have left the Curry campus completely, and especially on the weekends.
Students Robert Smith (Junior, Criminal Justice) and Bobby Fanning (Junior, Communication) were on campus last weekend, and felt that it was quite peculiar. In regard to the weekend, Smith stated, “Although a lot of students decided to commute back home because they didn’t feel safe, I stayed on campus last weekend. It was pretty quiet here, no one was roaming the halls or walking around the Student Center. Everyone on campus, for the most part, laid low in case something were to happen.”
Fanning also weighed in by saying, “I was here during the weekend. Last Friday, I helped produce Haillie Johnson’s radio show. When I left the radio station, the campus felt extremely eerie. I was looking over my shoulder constantly, it wasn’t the usual feeling here at Curry, it felt like a ghost town.”
Curry College and the Milton Police Department are still investigating these hate crimes. With the marches and various faculty meetings occurring since these incidents, hopefully there will be justice and a positive change on the Curry College campus.
Be watching email this week for the mandatory college wide virtual event for Friday, February 25th from 1 to 4 p.m. No classes or athletics will be held and the entire community is expected to attend, including students, faculty and Curry staff.