The College mourns

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April 20, 2007

4:34 PM

p. As the Virginia Tech community recoils from Monday’s tragic shooting, college communities nationwide are showing their support.

p. Reacting to the tragedy, the College’s Student Assembly quickly organized a candlelight vigil. Students gathered in the Wren courtyard Monday night to listen to College President Gene Nichol and Vice President for Student Affairs Sam Sadler speak.

p. Sophomores Zach Pilchen and Valerie Hopkins, the newly inaugurated president and vice president of the Student Assembly, began the vigil while candles were being distributed among students.

p. In another show of support, sophomores Katie McCown and Christina Hoffman, as well as senior Mike Morrissey, created a banner for students to sign that will be sent to Virginia Tech.

p. “We couldn’t just sit there without doing something to help relay our thoughts and sympathies to Tech while concurrently giving the students here an outlet,” McCown said.

p. The three students communicated their idea to former SA president Ryan Scofield and other members of the student government and decided to unveil the banner at the vigil service Monday.

p. The original six-foot-long banner has now been extended because of a huge student reception, and it now extends about 36 feet, McCown said.

p. “When we came up with the idea for the banner, it was mostly a way to help students send their thoughts and prayers to Tech.” McCown said. “The banner has really helped foster unity.”

p. Scofield said that he hoped that the student-organized responses “provide an outlet to express their grief and to experience the overwhelming sense of community that means so much to all of us here at the College.”

p. “Having dealt with feelings of grief while at college, we wanted to show Tech that they are not alone.” McCown said. “As has been continuously repeated in the last few days, ‘Today, we are all Hokies.’”

p. Throughout the College campus, student reactions to the Virginia Tech tragedies were visible. As a small sign of support, a large number of College students changed their Facebook profile pictures to black ribbons with the Virginia Tech logo. Others showed their support by sporting Virginia Tech gear and wearing orange and maroon ribbons. Friday is “Orange and Maroon Effect” day.

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