To the campus community,
Well, our weekend was not what we expected here at Hiram, but life is unpredictable. I’m writing to thank all those who worked this weekend to provide for the safety and security of our community during the bomb threat. There are many to recognize and I will not attempt to name them all.
Our Campus Emergency Response Team (CERT) received high marks from local and state law enforcement authorities for our efforts to evacuate the campus and for communicating regularly with our many constituent groups utilizing the talents of the College Relations Staff. Our Residence Life, Student Life, Health, Counseling, and Campus Safety personnel went above and beyond to ensure that our students were cared for and in a safe location. AVI returned to campus with a skeleton crew and provided as many food options as they could late Saturday night to feed students. Sodexho personnel were enormously helpful to fire and police officials who were conducting the room by room investigation. I’m grateful that everyone adhered to the mandatory evacuation and understood the necessity of our team taking the threat seriously. We pulled together, as we always do, and demonstrated once again that we will do whatever is necessary to protect our most cherished asset: our people.
What do we do now? We do what the British did in World War II: “Keep Calm and Carry On”. We go forward, proud of the manner in which our community responded. We acknowledge that Hiram is not immune to this kind of threat from someone whose motives are at this point unknown to us. We give thanks for the extraordinary people among us who rallied together to lead us through this troubling circumstance. And we recommit to making our living and learning environment one in which all are welcome.
The person responsible for the email threat will be found. If not now, eventually. The FBI was on campus again today and, as you might expect, they have very little tolerance for this kind of ridiculous activity. We’re assisting them in every way possible.
Friday night was an uncertain time. I’m pleased that we acted swiftly and smartly to protect our community. Today, as we move forward with our daily activities, our response must not be continued fear. Rather, our response should be a celebration of this remarkable institution and the people who make it special with their work on behalf of students.
I’m proud to be here at Hiram with each of you.
Thomas V. Chema