Protecting Our Community



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Questions and Answers

Responses to questions asked during the 10/9/23 Community Conversation


    Q: I am a student on campus, and I am now kind of nervous to be on campus due to what happened. I have in person classes, but will virtual options be available as an option?

    A: These types accommodation requests should be discussed with your professor and department chair. The course modality will not be changed but temporary accommodations could be considered. 

    Q: How do we move forward if our kids don’t feel safe especially those who commute and don’t have a safe space on campus to go to if something is wrong?

    A: It is completely normal for individuals to have these feelings when traumatic events happen.  We encourage our commuter students to engage in the community by connecting with their peers.  We have a commuter lounge that is available to these students.  In addition, the student center is open to all students.  And the library is an option when students need a space to unwind.  When students need additional support Counseling Services is available to assist them in addressing their fears.  We all need to trust the process and "Run, hide, fight" as we have been instructed.   


    Q: How can we ensure guns and other weapons are not brought on the campus? Showing an ID to get on campus does not stop weapons for being on a person or in a vehicle.

    A: We are meeting with venders to implement AI Weapons Detection technology. This technology will identify any weapon brought on campus. We are also considering ShotSpotter technology. This technology will identify any location where a shot is fired and zoom in to that location. 

    Q: Does the school have sirens if this happens again?

    A: Yes, the University has a Siren System on campus. It is tested every Saturday.

    Q: What security measures can we see implemented to further ensure the security of your students, faculty, and staff?

    A: There are several security measures under consideration to improve safety of the campus. Those measures include:

    • Launch of a campus emergency mobile app
    • Artificial Intelligence (AI) Weapons Detection System
    • Assessment of enhanced perimeter fencing to control access points onto the campus
    • Assessment of ShotSpotter, a gunshot detection system for implementation
    • Assessment of metal detectors in residential housing
    • Upgrade of all campus exterior lighting to LED
    • License plate reader at MARC station and Henry Circle entrances
    • Active Shooter Attack Prevention and Preparedness training for faculty, staff and students.

    Q: Will you incorporate a preparation seminar prior to major gatherings to educate students on protocols?

    A: Yes. Campus Police will continue to conduct Campus Safety Talk Sessions and training programs.

    Q: What are the procedures for lock down situations during a regular on campus day?

    A: When a lock down event occurs, a BEES alert will be issued and go out to every cell phone and computer. The alert will give specific instructions. When the campus is in lock down, all entry points will be secured by police. No entries will be allowed. 

    Q: Does BSU has web cameras on poles throughout campus on several buildings and parking lot whereas police can monitor?

    A: BSU has surveillance cameras distributed throughout the campus.  Cameras are monitored and controlled by our Campus Public Safety Office.

    Q: How is Bowie going to protect students from those entering the campus through the Marc Train who do not belong there?

    A: Campus Police will increase foot patrols around campus. Gate access via the MARC Station will be staffed 24 hours by an armed security. Enhanced surveillance cameras with facial recognition software are in place throughout the campus. The University is considering implementation of perimeter fencing to control access points onto the campus.

    Q: Are there any plans to expand the infrastructure to build more exits from campus?

    A: The University has been vigilant with ongoing upgrades to the University’s infrastructure and will continue to assess the campus to determine other possible enhancements. 


    Q: Moving forward, what continued support will be available and what outreach will be made to students to ensure they feel safe physically as well as emotionally?

    A: Counseling Services offers individual and group counseling to students that may need to talk.  Students may request an appointment for counseling by calling Counseling Services at (301) 860-4169 or by emailing  If a student is in crisis and needs immediate assistance, please contact our after-hours crisis number at (301) 860-4164 or call Public Safety at (301) 860-4040 for situations on campus involving immediate danger.  

    In addition, we provide workshops and programs on managing stress, mindfulness, art therapy, and other mental health topics throughout the semester.  In response to this incident, we have increased our presence on campus by offering virtual drop-in sessions, de-stress sessions, resident hall visits, tabling within the Student Center and referrals to our community partners.  We care about our students and will continue to provide resources to support their emotional health and well-being.

    Q: In order to obtain student input and how efficient the new implementations are, will a survey be made available to students regarding their feelings about safety on campus etc....?

    A: Campus Police will conduct safety talk sessions with students, faculty, and staff where their comments can be shared. Surveys, focus groups, and large group meetings will be used to gather student input. Additionally, we are looking for different student leadership groups to appoint reps to the committees that will actually be making key decisions about security. 

    Q: Are there any safety tips or resources that we can follow to keep ourselves and our campus safe?

    A: We must all remember that everyone has a role to play in keeping our campus safe. Immediately report any suspicious activity to Campus Police at 301-860-4040 or activate Blue Light phones for immediate contact with BSU Police. Wear your Bulldog Card when on campus to be easily identified as a member of our community. Please remember SEE SOMETHING, SAY SOMETHING. 

    Q: Is there anything posted in writing for students which shares how to report threats and incidents?

    A: Students receive this information/training during New Student Orientation, and it is also shared specifically with freshmen during their first-year orientation class. Additionally, resident students receive this information in their resident orientations and student leaders hear it again during the mandatory student leadership institute. With that, we are exploring other ways to further educate students on why they should report and where they should report.

    Q: Is BSU active with any gun control efforts/policy initiatives as an organization and encourage student groups to do so as well?

    A: Handguns/weapons are illegal on Bowie State University campus. These topics are covered during New Student Orientation. The Dean of Students and the Chief of Police conducts safety talks for students throughout the semesters. 


    Q: What are you doing about the consumption of alcohol and smoking weed openly on campus? Is the campus a “smoke free campus”?

    A: Smoking is only permitted in designated areas away from campus buildings. The university is reviewing its smoking policy.

    Q: What security measures are being taken to monitor the MLK Building, which has been transformed into a hub for drug activity, even during lecture hours? The evidence shows that there is a correlation between drugs and crime.

    A: Campus Police have increased foot patrol. The University added more light towers in the area.

    Q: There was an unbelievable amount of weed smelt on the yard. Were the police aware? Did they do anything about that?

    A: The use of marijuana is prohibited on the Bowie State University campus. Due to recreational marijuana being legalized for young adults 21 and over throughout the State of Maryland, it is a challenge for campus police.  We will ask people to extinguish the marijuana and leave the campus. 


    Q: Whose idea was it to openly invite MSU students with decorations and signage? As they were going to come anyway but that allowed the welcome for THEM plus friends and family to come.

    A: The university reached out to our sister institution to acknowledge their pain and share in the HBCU welcoming spirit around homecoming. Security on our campus was enhanced after the incident on Morgan’s campus.

    Q: Why would you invite another school that just had a dangerous incident to your homecoming event? You essentially put our students at even more risk....not to say that this wouldn't have happened anyway.

    A: The university reached out to our sister institution to acknowledge their pain and share in the HBCU welcoming spirit around homecoming. Security our campus was enhanced after the shooting on Morgan’s campus.


    Q: Why aren’t students automatically signed up for the Bees Alert? It seems like those messages would be automatically sent to our phones, the same way we get notifications about financial aid. We often don’t find out where to sign up until something happens.

    A: All current students, faculty and staff that provided their mobile phone during onboarding have been signed up to receive BEES Alerts.  Those that do not wish to participate may opt-out using the provided instructions. You may register to receive BEES Alerts by going to

    Q: Why can’t the parents sign up for the Bees alerts?

    A: Parents may register to receive BEES Alerts by going to

    Q: Was there any communication sent to students residing at CTU or the 9 about the shuttle after the shooting? There was a Resident stranded at 1 am.

    A: Once the shelter in place was lifted, CTU/9 students were instructed to get to ELLC. Some students were taken to ELLC.  Shuttles were not permitted to enter the campus, so students were picked up at the ELLC building which is at the top of the campus. 

    Q: The current Wi-Fi service at BSU is not the best and can possibly hinder communication. What is being done to quickly improve and enhance this service?

    A: We are currently working with a vendor partner to improve Wi-Fi service on campus.


    Q: During the concert two people were jumped and beaten and had their phone stolen and there was no security. So where was the swat team when they were getting jumped on your campus?

    A: That is tragic and alarming. I pray those people are okay. The S.W.A.T. Team was not on patrol, but is used in high risk events. Officers and patrol Troopers were positioned in the quad area of James Gym and McKeldin Gym. Other officers were walking throughout campus.  

    Q: How serious should I as a parent believe the safety of my child & the other students when less than 12 hours of the incident from Saturday night, I was gained access to campus with no one at the security booth & was saw no “presence” whatsoever?

    A: You can be assured that your child and other students are safe. As the incident occurred only 12 hours prior, we were mobilizing and shifting manpower and resources to better secure the campus. This effort was done by employing more armed security guards and bringing in officers from other shifts to control campus access. All ID’s will be checked, starting at 5PM. The guardhouse will be manned at all times. We will have the assistance of the Maryland State Police and Prince George’s County Police conducting patrols on campus throughout the day. 

    Q: Was security consideration made for the influx of Morgan State students and alumni that increased the normal number of participants in Saturday activities?

    A: We were prepared for the influx of extra persons on campus for homecoming. We were not prepared for a mass number of people from Towson, Coppin State and attendees from Baltimore and Washington DC. The decision was made to close the entrances to campus as we conducted a walk-through of the campus and observed the masses of people. 

    Q: Did the police catch the suspects?

    A: The Maryland State Police is investigating this incident. They have not arrested any suspects at this time, but are following up on several leads. 

    Q: What is BSU doing about enhanced training with security? My daughter was held outside CMRC during the panic by security even after pleading and showing him her ID with keys. This causes irreparable mental health issues and it was unnecessary.

    A: For one, we will not be using that same security company in the future. Secondly, any security vendor who is brought on campus to support large events will be subject to the university’s active shooter training.