Colleges beef up security in wake of VA Tech massacre

Security improvements are being made at colleges around Westchester and Hudson Valley in the aftermath of the Virginia Tech massacre.

Police say college student Cho Seung-Hui fatally gunned down 32 people on the Virginia Tech campus before taking his own life. Caitlin Hammaren, 19, a graduate of Minisink Valley High School, was a victim of the shootings.

Westchester Community College is not taking the Virginia massacre lightly. College officials have been holding a series of meetings with security. They are offering students counseling and taking a good look at their current crises plans.

The crises plans were revamped following a shooting on campus in 2000. Joy Thomas, 22, was shot in the head by her ex-boyfriend who had been stalking her. Fortunately, Thomas survived. Call boxes and cameras were later installed around campus.

Some criticize Virginia Tech for not making more people aware of the danger after the first shooting. Westchester Community College officials say if a similar incident occurred on their campus, they would put all the information immediately on their Web site. They say they would also put signs on all of their 13 buildings. In addition, officials are exploring a possible emergency text messaging system.

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