Posters of attack suspect trigger anxiety in students

Brea Jones/ Staff Writer

In the recent weeks following the assault on the Biscayne Bay campus, there has been a different feel on campus.

While we are all moving forward, the lack of answers and no captured suspect are putting students on edge.

There is now a lingering sense of fear throughout the student population that has yet to be discussed.

I remember the tragic day when students initially received the email that there had been an

The vagueness of the email caused students to believe the incident was a small thing.

But as we began to research the real facts, we realized the seriousness of the matter.

The first few days without a clear description of the suspect were the most stressful.

No matter what time it was, we walked in groups and constantly looked over our shoulders for
anything suspicious.

On Thursday, Sept. 13, the FIU Police Department released a sketch of the suspect and the
campus was once again on edge.

Then, FIUPD and a few MAST@FIU students walked around campus passing out flyers to everyone in sight and it felt like we were closer to answers.

But we were wrong.

Now, we have a sketch of a face but no name or real sense of identification at all.

We have been forced to stare into the blank eyes of a nameless suspect no matter where we go
on campus.

Every single building, office, bathroom and elevator has flyers.

On the first day the sketch was released there were about ten to 15 flyers placed around Wolfe University Center alone.

For the past four weeks, we have been looking at the same photo with no update or strong leads and it is making students like Junior Madison Rodriguez worried.

“I feel like it’s haunting me because I see it wherever I go on campus,” said Rodriguez.

“It makes me feel on high alert and anxious so I can’t even imagine how the victims must feel.”

Personally, I have been a little jumpy at things I normally wouldn’t be.

A swift door open, seeing someone when I turn a corner and walking in the dark puts me on edge.

Students who feel like they have been more anxious since the incident should take the necessary actions and speak to someone at Counseling and Psychological Services.

Talking to a professional might help you clear your head.

If you need assistance walking to your car late at night, you can call campus police and they can escort you.

There are ways to combat the nervous and scared feeling when you are on campus.

It’s important for students to be aware of their surroundings wherever they are.

Safety and health are very important and we all have to make sure we are in the best shape for both.

“We can’t live in fear,” said Rodriguez.

I couldn’t agree more. We have to start moving forward.

Students and faculty alike should now more than ever be alert and aware of their surroundings not only for their safety but for the safety of others.


The opinions presented within this page do not represent the views of PantherNOW Editorial Board. These views are separate from editorials and reflect individual perspectives of contributing writers and/or members of the University community.

Photo by Davide Pietralunga on Unsplash.

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