Counselors available for UAH students returning to campus - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Counselors available for UAH students returning to campus

By Margo Gray – bio | email

 HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - It was the first day in many days to come for the students and faculty at the University of Alabama-Huntsville to put the shooting on campus behind them.

It happened more than a week ago when six faculty members were shot, three lost their lives and three others were wounded.

With a quick glance around the student center at UA-Huntsville, you'll sense an upbeat attitude.

Just being positive is what many are relying on after going through such a negative experience.

Freshmen, Samuel Estes said, "It's just a whole new experience, it just opens your eyes to just how fragile things are."

The entire campus fell apart when six faculty members were shot at a staff meeting.

The accused shooter, one of their own, biology professor Amy Bishop-Anderson.

With the incident more than a week behind them, faculty and students are trying to move forward, but not without a little help.

Some are seeking the help of the 97 counselors on campus or writing hand written letters to the victims families.

The college has even reached out for unconventional help with having therapy dogs on campus.

Dog owner, Pamela Selz who works for National Animal Assisted Crisis Response said, "That's pretty much what we try to do it is offer that stress relief a little diversion for people who are going through trauma."

Freshmen, Matthew Shields said, "We are all just trying to get pass the whole thing and move on like normal."

Whatever normal may be but many say it will take time to rebound.

UAH Business Professor John said, "I think the campus itself is very resilient and the faculty is resilient. I think we will come back but obviously this is a huge tragedy I think we will spring back it will take some time. It's not going to happen today or next week."

Part of the recovery process is making students and faculty feel safer.

Increased police presence and dozens of counselors will remain on campus as long as they are needed.

©2009 WAFF. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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