Published: April 19, 2007
A Message from President Vaughn
The University of Tampa community
extends its condolences and support to the victims’ families and
friends in the Virginia Tech tragedy.
There was an outpouring of
support and empathy by UT students on Tuesday night at a spontaneous
candlelight vigil at the Plant Hall flagpole.
first priority must always be the safety and security of its community
members, a difficult challenge in a society that embraces openness and
the exchange of ideas. To that end, The University of Tampa regularly
reviews all of its safety and communication procedures as they relate to
the variety of threats that can endanger the campus community.
has both an Emergency Operations Team and an Emergency Operations Plan
that deal with crisis situations. The EOT has been called to action many
times to deal with emergencies such as hurricanes and other potential
threats. The team, which I lead, is composed of senior University staff.
February, I appointed an ad hoc study group to evaluate the
University's safety measures and communication policies as they relate
to the safety of its members. Some recommendations have been made and
implemented as the group conducted its work. The final study and
recommended changes will be communicated to the campus community along
with procedural changes.
Specific policies, such as timely
warnings to the campus population when there is a threat, are being
refined. New high-tech methods of communication to the campus are being
evaluated in addition to the verbal warnings, postings, voicemail,
e-mail, Web site notification, electronic press releases and other
avenues used during emergencies.
Campus building security is
another major area being evaluated. The 45 buildings on the UT campus
present unique security challenges and unique solutions. For example,
residence halls, with their higher level of electronic security, are
more easily protected than classroom buildings, libraries and open
spaces. We will continue to work on these specific issues, as well as
the general security measures used on campus.
institution in a free society can ever be completely immune to threat,
our goal is to provide a safe and secure campus. We will continually
evaluate and strengthen our procedures to minimize the dangers for all
members of the University community.
— President Ronald L. Vaughn
The following global e-mail was sent to the University community by President Vaughn on Monday, April 17:
University of Tampa community offers condolences to the families and
friends of the victims at Virginia Tech. We are stunned and saddened by
this terrible tragedy. Events like this ought not to happen in any
school, business, governmental agency, or organization of any kind.
of us are understandably affected in some way by what happened on April
16, 2007, and we encourage our community members to talk about this
tragedy. The University urges students in particular to seek out Student
Affairs and Residence Life staff and their faculty for support, and, if
need be, the University’s Student Health and Counseling Center.
Please keep those affected in your thoughts and prayers.