'An atrocity' | University leaders address bomb threats made against DSU, other HBCUs

DJ McAneny // WDEL

"We shall not be moved. Our job is to continue to educate kids, students from all backgrounds and ability, regardless of what they look like, or where they come from. So we're very, very proud of that," said Delaware State university President Tony Allen Thursday. "Our students, our faculty and staff are okay, and we are continuing to move forward."

During an appearance before the Delaware General Assembly's Joint Finance Committee on February 3, 2022, to make a pitch for their FY '23 budget, Allen addressed the recent bomb threats made against his school earlier this week.

DSU was one of roughly a half-dozen Historically Black Colleges and Universities which received threats against them early Monday, January 31. Allen praised Delaware's law enforcement agencies for their good work securing the scene so quickly, with the president said was before noon.

"By 1130 a.m. or so, we got the all clear. And the reason we got the all clear, had a lot to do with the integration of law enforcement across the state," Allen said. "In addition to our own police force, we had about six law enforcement agencies helping us in that regard. I'm really quite proud of that integration and what that has meant for the university."

However, that the incident happened at all was disappointing, he said.

"Having said that, it is an atrocity that it would have to happen," Allen said. "We are continuing to work with our sister institutions across the country, as well as federal, state, and local authorities to get to the bottom of it."

During his own hearing for his university's FY '23 pitch, University of Delaware President Dennis Assanis expressed his full support for their neighboring institution, and said what happened has no place in this world.

"I want to express my sincerest concerns, both personally and on behalf of the entire University of Delaware, about the recent bomb threats which happened at Delaware State University and other HBCUs across the country," Assanis said.

"These incidents are extremely disturbing to me, and everybody in higher education. They just don't have any place in our communities."

He promised UD would work together with DSU for as long as necessary to ensure all students' safety.

"Just as the University of Delaware and Delaware State have worked together on so many academic research and other initiatives, of course we're absolutely committed to working together so that we can all stand up to racism, and live up to our values of diversity, equity, and inclusion for our nation--and the world, really," Assanis said. "I spoke with President Tony Allen to say how much we support him and, of course, everyone I know at the University of Delaware feels the same way. Our police department immediately offered our help and I'm glad we've addressed it the right way."


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