Sadly, I am writing to you for the second time in less than a year to express my deepest sorrow about a tragic event on one of our nation’s college campuses. Today I will send a note to President Peters at Northern Illinois University expressing the sympathy and support of their fellow Huskies in Boston.

As we hear the stories of students who were witness to this horrible event, I must remind the members of our community that your safety is paramount to us. It is a sad fact that random acts of violence occur. We have taken steps to minimize the extent of that possibility on our campus. Measures like 24-hour identification checks in the residence halls are in place for your protection. We also staff a professional, well-trained police force and we collaborate closely with the Boston Police Department. This year, we instituted a rapid alert notification system to inform the community in the event of an emergency.

You too can help in this preventative effort. Should you ever see anyone behaving in a manner that you deem suspicious, trust your instinct and call the Northeastern Police Department at 617.373.3333. They are there to help.

Today we are reminded yet again of just how precarious life is. Our thoughts and prayers are with those in the Northern Illinois community. We have many students from the area who may know people directly involved in yesterday’s attack. Should you or anyone you know be affected by this tragedy, please contact University Health and Counseling Services at 617.373.2772. The Spiritual Life Office is also available to help those in need of comforting, at 617.373.2728.