While Interim President Hunter Rawlings announced the implementation of increased campus safety measures after last week’s stabbing, some Cornellians expressed concern that precautions do not extend far enough.
After Wednesday night’s violent altercation and last month’s fatal stabbing of Ithaca College student Anthony Nazaire, both Rawlings and Cornell Police Chief Kathy Zoner sought to assure students that they are safe at Cornell.
“Safety is our top priority as violence has no place on or near our campus,” Rawlings said in an email. He added that, although there is no ongoing threat to Cornell, security provisions have been bolstered, mentioning that there will be an increased number of police patrols and Blue Light escort teams.
Despite these measures, some students and parents say their safety concerns persist, explaining that, although no Cornellians were harmed in Wednesday night’s incident, the presence of violence on or near campus this semester has been startling.
Andrew Cho ’17 questioned the effectiveness of the University’s Blue Light system, saying he feels that Cornell should do more to keep perpetrators off of campus.
“I don’t know a single person who uses Blue Light Escort teams,” he said. “The school should make greater effort on campus safety by only allowing Cornell-affiliated people on campus after a certain time.”
However, Jung Won Kim ’18 said that, as the stabbing victim and suspects involved had no connections to Cornell, the incidents that occurred Wednesday night have not affected his sense of security on campus.
“It’s just unlucky that it always seems as though non-Cornellians, for some reason, like to come to Cornell to commit crimes,” Kim said.
Steven Salenik ’17 said he has felt less safe after the incident and plans to rely on personal measures to ensure his continued well-being.
“This just reminded me that Ithaca is not really any safer than any other American town,” Salenik said. “I now consider carrying a gun on me in Ithaca in the places where I am legally allowed to do so.”
Many have also expressed disappointment in the performance of the Ithaca and Cornell police teams, who have not publicly identified the perpetrators in either of the stabbing incidents this semester.