The school shooting on campus at the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill was senseless. My heart breaks for the faculty member we lost.
I don’t wish for anyone to go through what we have gone through. That being said, I’ve learned some things I want to pass on.
UNC Chapel Hill Student Resources in Times of Crisis
Whether you are a student (or have a student) at UNC, or are the parent of a child at another college or university, I pray our experiences help educate and guide you in those difficult circumstances.
My Daughter is Safe After UNC Shooting on Campus
First of all, Kariss is safe. There are so many emotions to describe how Britton & I felt at home away from her: heartbroken, helpless, emotional, angry, and unsettled.
I drove my daughter to #UNC just 2 weeks ago. I gave her a lot of love and advice before leaving campus, but neither of us could ever have anticipated this moment. No one is ever prepared for an event like this, so we are trying to embrace and extend grace while healing our own hurting hearts and heads.
I love the school and the community, but as an alumnus and a parent, I’m astounded by the stories I’m hearing from students about the different communication they received during the tragedy.
What I Learned as a Parent
I’ve learned a lot as an out-of-state UNC parent in the past 24 hours. I pray you never find yourself needing this information, but just in case, I wanted to compile everything I learned and the resources I uncovered all in one place.
Alert Carolina Hotline & Social Notifications
First and foremost, make sure you are receiving notifications from Alert Carolina. This can be done in several ways:
- Follow @AlertCarolina on Twitter
- Check alertcarolina.unc.edu for official campus alerts and notifications
- If you’re part of the UNC system, you can register your phone number on your ONYEN account to have alerts sent to your phone via text message
Carolina Critical Conditions Explained:
I couldn’t find the Carolina Critical Conditions explained anywhere official. This troubled me because Alert Carolina often communicates the status of campus by announcing a condition level.
This is my bare-bones summary of the verbal explanation I received from their hotline:
- Critical Condition 1: Classes are being held and campus is operating under normal conditions
- Critical Condition 2: Classes are canceled, but university operations are still taking place
- Critical Condition 3: Classes canceled, all university operations suspended except for essential services (such as housing & dining halls)
UNC Hotline: 919-918-1999
Speaking of the hotline, I found it on a UNC parents’ Facebook group and it’s where I received most of this information. I didn’t ask if this hotline operates during non-emergency times, but it was a lifeline when I didn’t feel like I could get specific answers to my questions anywhere else.
UNC Campus Escort
For students who don’t feel safe to walk by themselves on campus at night, there are several options:
- Carolina SafeWalk operates on campus Sunday – Thursday from 10 PM – 2 AM (so students don’t have to walk back to their dorm or building alone): call (919)-962-SAFE or schedule a reservation. This is a free, student-run organization.
- Carolina Police: students can always call the non-emergency number of the campus police if they need help or feel unsafe. That number is 919-962-8100
The Carolina Ready safety mobile app is designed to help students feel safer on campus. It also includes a number of features, including:
- emergency alerts
- tools for staying safe on campus
- emergency response guides
- campus maps
- health and wellness resources
You can download the APP on both iPhone and Android.
CAPS: Counseling and Psychological Services
Many additional counseling services are being provided during this difficult time to students, faculty, and staff. Even beyond the tragedy, students can reach the Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) line 24/7 at (919) 966-3658.
An image of the UNC Old Well with a broken heart submitted in our UNC parent Facebook group.