CMU students return to classes after deadly shooting

Mar 13, 2018

Classes at Central Michigan University resumed Monday for first time since a deadly shooting on campus.

James Davis, Jr. is accused of killing his parents in his dorm room on March 2, right before the start of CMU’s spring break. He’s being held in a county jail.

Michigan Radio’s “Morning Edition” host Doug Tribou spoke with CMU’s associate vice president for student services Tony Voisin about the first day back.

"All those students who lived in that area, that complex, for them it's a heightened sense of awareness.  Certainly there's some anxiety," Voisin said. "But generally it's a very safe campus. Students feel safe, but in an incident like this it causes you to be a little more alert of what's happening around you."

CMU has increased counseling services and extended their hours. Voisin said the school has also brought in extra support staff for students and faculty.

"We're introducing some new group counseling sessions," he said. "Just trying to get as many students into our counseling center [as possible] and really try and get them discussing how they're feeling, what they went through. Everyone has a different story."  

While reporting on the shooting and the lockdown that lasted several hours while police searched for Davis, Jr., Michigan Radio's Steve Carmody noted that some students were frustrated by the length of the lockdown and the fact that their plans to leave for spring break were put on hold.

"It did take a long time," Voisin said. "But at that point, it's all about trying to provide a safe environment and eliminate any further concerns." 

CMU has added a number of security measures over the years after shootings at other colleges, including card access to enter dorms, according to Voisin. He says the school is reviewing its plans. 

"As much you plan and try and develop exercises for this type of thing, it's always a new experience when it happens for real."