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August 26, 2023


Aggie Parents and Families

I know that many of you are troubled by issues over the past 48 hours related to gun violence near and on our campus; I share your deep concern. While no A&T students were harmed in the two incidents in question, I understand the abiding concern of parents and loved ones who want to ensure their students are studying and living in safety.

Last night’s event occured at the North Carolina A&T Student Center, the beautiful centerpiece of our campus.  Individuals who are neither part of our student body nor connected to A&T came to the Student Center where an altercation broke out among them, ending in a gun being fired. One individual was wounded and self-transported to a local hospital, where he was treated and released.

Simply put, such an incident is unacceptable at our university. Gun violence among young adults is not only on the rise around our nation, our state and our city, we are seeing an all-time high in gun violence. It’s a significant issue with implications for virtually every community in our country. Locally, we are raising these issues in every dialogue we enter with City of Greensboro and Guilford County officials. We cannot and will not allow our students and our campus to become casualties in this senseless phenomenon.

In preparation for the school year, we have already put the following measures in place to enhance campus safety:

  • We have implemented a new drone security system and an enhanced network of land- and police-based cameras with monitoring capabilities that are making a difference in police work to prevent crime and hold criminals accountable. For instance, those systems have provided valuable assistance in the investigation into last night’s events.
  • We enhanced the number of law enforcement and security officers on campus who patrol our grounds and buildings and respond to student needs as they arise.
  • We implemented a new personal safety app, Safe Zone, now available free of charge for iPhone and Android users. The app provides emergency assistance, including notification of law enforcement, and more.

In light of last week’s events, we are going further:

  • We are enhancing the security presence at the Student Center with additional personnel deployed there throughout the day and evening. Patrols will be expanded throughout the 150,000-square-foot center and in the area around the facility. Students will begin noticing the increased presence immediately.
  • UPD has been restricting motor vehicle access to the Student Center beginning at 9 p.m. nightly. Starting immediately, that nightly restriction will occur earlier in the evening. Visitors to the Student Center will also be subject to show their Aggie OneID card upon security request and be required to leave the area if they are unable to do so.
  • A recently approved policy on trespassing gives the university greater authority in removing unwanted individuals from our campus. The policy revision will further empower the university and UPD in dealing with individuals such as the uninvited campus guests last night.
  • The university is also enhancing the number and level of security personnel active at off-campus A&T-managed apartment complexes. And UPD is working to obtain additional authority for officers in off-campus areas just beyond the boundaries of campus. That is part of an enhanced memorandum of cooperation between UPD and Greensboro Police Department that is in development now.

The above actions will provide critical upgrades to the environment in and around our campus. The remaining ingredient, however, is each of our students and employees. I have impressed upon them today the absolute necessity of doing all we can to help maintain a safe campus, including making sure that individuals who are here for no other reason than to cause trouble do not remain on our campus. I hope that you will help reinforce the message with your student that if you see something, you owe it to yourself, your peers and our university to say something.

Thanks for your good faith in sending your students to North Carolina A&T. We pledge to honor the confidence you placed in us and to continue to do everything we can to support a safe and welcoming campus environment for our students and their families. We will continue to review and assess the measures we have put in place and are putting in place to ensure they are making a difference.

Should your student or any other student you know of need mental health assistance during this period, please know that counseling services are available to our students 24/7 through the Counseling Center. Make sure your student is aware that help, should they need it, as available via the Counseling Center website or by calling (336)-334-7727. No A&T student should ever feel as though they are alone in a time of need.


Harold L. Martin, Sr.

North Carolina A&T State University