Augustana Observer

Augustana Observer

Augustana Observer

Students participate in active shooter drill

Sophomore Gloria Navaraz was one of the students who pretended to be wounded during the active shooter drill at Augustana College on April 26.

She knew it was a drill, but the active shooter exercise was all too real for Augustana College freshman Carli Schwanebeck.
“It was terrifying,” said Schwanebeck as she sat in Carver after Augustana’s active shooter drill. “A lot of us hit the ground, while others just started running.”
The annual drill was part of Augustana College’s ongoing plan to keep its students safe during an active shooter situation. More than 500 students volunteered, six local hospitals assisted, and countless policemen, firemen and paramedics rushed to the scene.
“There was a lot of work specifically from Mark (Beckwith) and Tom (Phillis) to get all the crews here,” said Ashley Newell, pubic safety student worker.
Local police would not comment on the drill.
Before the incident occurred, student volunteers nervously sat in Centennial Hall listening to a 1973 alum speak of his experience with an active shooter when he was a student. After the lights dimmed and gunshots rang out, chaos erupted.
“It was a surprise even for everyone involved,” said Schwanebeck, admitting that the incident actually made her cry.
This was the case for many students as they did not know just how real it would turn out to be.
“Even knowing what was gonna happen was crazy,” said senior Jacob Genens. “I felt sick to my stomach. It was very realistic to me.”

Students eat pizza and socialize at the Carver Center after exiting Centennial.
Students eat pizza and socialize at the Carver Center after exiting Centennial.

Non-injured students rushed out of Centennial Hall and were escorted to the Carver Athletic Center. Those who were critically injured were ambulanced to local hospitals, as the MetroLINK bus service drove the non-critically injured. Although some injured students went to Carver by mistake.
Some students were even painted with makeup to simulate gunshot wounds, cuts, and bruises.
“I actually tripped and fell in the isle with so many people around,” said senior Alex Gorsuch. “We definitely got the full experience.”
In the aftermath, as student volunteers sat exchanging stories of the drill, many felt relieved such measures were being taken to ensure their safety.
“There’s comfort in knowing the campus is prepared,” said Gorsuch. “Individually you can’t do much besides run, but I’m glad the management is doing this.”
Senior Courtney Tate agreed with the difference in attitudes between the administration and the students.
“The administration was very ready and coordinated,” said Tate. “But the student body in general was kinda chaotic.”
For more stories on the active shooter drill, click here.

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Students participate in active shooter drill