City College stands with Umpqua


San Diego City College President Anthony Beebe addresses a crowd of students, faculty and staff in Gorton Quad on Oct. 8 before a moment of silence for victims of the Umpqua Community College shooting in Oregon. Photo by Susan Lee, Contributor

Angelica Wallingford

About 200 of San Diego City College’s faculty, staff and students gathered for a moment of silence for the victims of the Umpqua Community College shooting in Oregon on Oct. 8 in Gorton Quad.

The moment of silence at City was a part of a larger observation coordinated by the American Association of Community Colleges, according to The San Diego Union-Tribune.

“I think it’s for all of us to be aware that safety is all of our business. Safety is something that we all ought to be aware of. We can’t just rely on a certain group of people but we all have to be aware of safety at the college and we have to be the eyes and ears for the police department,” City College President Anthony Beebe said. “It’s a big campus; it’s 60 square acres here and the only way that we can have the entire place covered is if all of us take a little bit of responsibility in making sure that we report anything’s weird or suspicious like I was saying and making sure that somebody’s aware of it. Don’t just turn your back and walk away. We can’t do that; we have to be responsible for that. That’s the critical piece of it.”

In his President’s Waypoint newsletter, Beebe addressed the tragedy at Umpqua and recalled the time he spent in Roseburg, Oregon, as a firefighter just one mile from the community college.

“… No one could have imagined that some 40 years later, the small community college just a mile down the road from that station would become the site of the most deadly mass shooting in Oregon history,” Beebe wrote.

San Diego Community College District Chancellor Constance M. Carroll also released a statement to the district’s faculty and staff on the shooting on Oct. 1.

“Our thoughts, best wishes, and support have been extended to our colleagues at Umpqua for what they have suffered today and for the valuable and promising lives that have been lost,” the statement said.

Carroll also referred to a YouTube video entitled “RUN. HIDE. FIGHT. Surviving an Active Shooter Event.” The almost six-minute video shows what options people could have in a potential active shooter situation.

“… Coping with an active shooter situation is a matter of personal decision,” Carroll wrote in her statement. “Therefore, I am resending the video that was previously distributed and discussed at our campus and departmental meetings.”

On Oct. 6, President Beebe sent a follow-up email to City College faculty and staff thanking them for the outpouring of responses he received from his President’s Waypoint.

In the email, Beebe tells faculty and staff that he met with Chancellor Carroll before the weekly Chancellor’s Cabinet meeting to address everyone’s concerns.

Beebe also mentioned that he also brought up those concerns during
the Chancellor’s Cabinet meeting.

“In the end, the Chancellor’s Cabinet was unanimous that the district move forward with the following 12 point safety response plan for City College,” Beebe said via the statement.

The 12-point safety response plan includes the hiring of two full-time City College officers, police forums and town hall meetings, safety and evacuation plan, safety surveys and “Knight Patrol,” paid student ambassadors who will act as the eyes and ears of administration and College Police, according to the email.