Connecticut Colleges React to Tragedy in Paris

The tragedy in Paris is hitting college campuses across the state.

Many schools have students and staff studying in the city.

On Saturday, UConn students held a prayer vigil for people suffering thousands of miles away. The events in Paris hit home for some students, including Lucie Rodriguez.

“It’s hard not to be able to do anything for them,” says Rodriguez, a UConn junior.

Rodriguez is from France and her father and brothers live in the outskirts of Paris. She is relieved to know at least they’re safe.

“Everything has been locked down and a curfew has been put on so everyone is scared and doesn’t know what to do,” says Rodriguez.

UConn says it has 12 undergraduates and one faculty member in Paris and they’re all okay.

Other Connecticut schools, including Quinnipiac University, have students studying in France. There was a moment of silence before Quinnipiac’s hockey game Saturday to honor the victims of the attacks.

Quinnipiac’s one student abroad in Paris was traveling outside the country during the attacks which left 129 dead and hundreds hurt.

“It’s really hard to see because I do see the pictures and I think ‘Oh my gosh, I walked on that street.’ I can’t believe that this happened somewhere I was just there,” says Jessa Sahl, a UConn junior.

Back at UConn, students who previously studied in France joined together. They painted a message of hope, “Peace for Paris,” on a spirit rock on campus.

Some students here have friends studying in the city right now.

“I think people are scared but it seems that people are ready to unite, stand together, and be strong,” says Sahl.

Staff at Trinity College, Connecticut College, and Wesleyan University say all their students abroad in Paris are safe. At last check, Yale University said it was still reaching out to those in Paris.

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