With College Hill hit by a blizzard March 13, Brown’s plans to join the National School Walkout against gun violence the next day almost got snowed in. Allyson Selin, a senior at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School, was looking forward to speaking—“I could not have imagined a better platform for my voice,” she said—but her flight was canceled. But despite the frigid temperatures, about 400 members of the Brown community gathered on the Green. “We shouldn’t be here today, and it’s frustrating that we are,” President Christina Paxson said.
The event was organized by Keiko Cooper-Hohn ’21, who urged the community to “come together, stand together, and talk about the issue together.”
Speakers included Nina Gregg, an MSD graduate who is a sophomore at Rhode Island School of Design. Attendees included members of Save Our Students, Thoughts Prayers Actions, and the Brown Progressive Action Committee, three undergraduate groups focused on gun-related violence. American Studies doctoral candidate Alyssa Anderson is writing a dissertation on school shootings. “For the first time, survivors of a school shooting are not only vocalizing their experience but taking on leadership roles in the social activism that results from it,” Anderson says. “They are proof that school shootings are more than just a series of isolated events but an ongoing epidemic that has yet to reach a solution.”