In an unprecedented move, Morgan State University has decided to cancel its homecoming festivities due to a campus shooting that injured five people.
The incident occurred after a joyous homecoming event, where Mr. and Ms. Morgan State were crowned at the school’s event center in Baltimore.
While all five individuals are expected to fully recover, the university’s concern for its students’ safety and the shooting’s unresolved nature led to the cancellation of most homecoming activities.
Homecoming celebrations are significant for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) like Morgan State.
Alongside the traditional aspects of fall celebrations, such events provide an opportunity for alumni to reconnect and for students to alleviate stress amidst their academic journey.
Moreover, homecoming is a networking platform for students to engage with alumni, seek guidance, and pave a path toward their future careers. Additionally, these celebrations play a crucial role in fundraising efforts for underfunded HBCUs, allowing them to garner support from alumni and other benefactors.
Recognizing the gravity of the situation, University President David K. Wilson emphasized the weight of the decision to cancel homecoming activities in a press release.
The safety and well-being of the Morgan State community remain paramount, and the university aims to ensure that the perpetrators of this atrocity are identified and brought to justice before resuming the celebrations.
The cancellation of HBCU homecomings can have a significant impact on the local community as well. These events bring an influx of alumni, contributing to increased sales for small business owners surrounding the campuses.
While the cancellation may have financial implications, Ty Couey, the president of the National HBCU Alumni Associations Foundation, expressed support for President Wilson’s difficult choice.
Couey emphasized that while homecoming is a vital source of income, the education and safety of black students remain paramount.
Some students had mixed emotions about the decision to cancel homecoming, with respect for safety but also disappointment at missing out on networking and fun.
Morgan State University decided to cancel all classes for the remainder of the week, and they have also informed students that counselors will be accessible for support.
In response to the unfortunate incident, the Baltimore Police Department is actively investigating to locate two individuals believed to be involved in the shooting.