Vigil Draws Campus Community Together

"We Need to Say 'Enough' to Violence"

Photo: Mike Peters

Brian Yankouski joins fellow students in a moment of silence for those who lost their lives.

On the evening of February 19, the Center for Non-Violence and Prevention Programs, University Police, Protestant Campus Ministry, Students Against Violence, Health Promotion and The Women’s Center, held a vigil in memory of the recent shooting victims of Northern Illinois University and Louisiana Technical College.

More than 70 members of the University community gathered in the Student Center Ballroom to reflect on these recent tragedies, remember those who lost their lives, and speak out against violence.

“We need to say ‘enough’ to violence,” said Jhon Velsaco, director of the Center for Non-Violence and Prevention Programs, “we need to create an environment that is safe for us to live, and learn, and even love.”

Lisa Weinberg, a staff psychologist from Counseling and Psychological Services, urged attendees to seek out services and encourage others in need to seek help. “This community offers great services, ranging from drop-in visits to 24-hour on call assistance to students in need,” she said, “the message to take away tonight is about balancing yourself, and the importance of self care.”

The evening included messages of encouragement, a musical performance, a speak out session, and concluded with a symbolic candlelight moment of silence using flashlights.

For further information about the Center for Non-Violence and Prevention Programs, contact Jhon Velasco at 973-655-7033 or by e-mail at

For further information about Counseling and Psychological Services, click here.

View images of the Vigil here.

Those who would like to view or send condolence messages to the institutions may do so at these links:

Northern Illinois University

Louisiana Technical College