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Would a freak act of violence affect your decision?


Jacie_ChE
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Hi Cafe-ers,

I'm a current grad student @ Purdue, and as some of you know there was an incident earlier this week on campus where someone was killed. This is not at all normal, W. Lafayette/Lafayette normally has a very low crime rate. 

The timing of this event came up in a disscussion with a few of our professors as they are staring to send out acceptances and were hoping this did not negativly reflect upon the school.

I was currious if something like this would actually affect someone's decision to attend a particular school.

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Interestingly enough, I actually had my interview with a POI at Purdue on the day that shooting happened. We mentioned it at the beginning of our chat but then just moved on as normal. I don't think it's particularly affecting my decision thoughts.

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Not mine, unless I had reason to believe it wasn't a freak act of violence. 

It might affect my impression of the school, though, if it was one of my lowest choices. Maybe on a subconscious level. *shrugs* Also, I'd have to make sure my mom didn't find out, haha... But if I was seriously interested in a school, it definitely wouldn't stop me. 

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I think it depends on how close I feel to this act of violence as well as how I feel about whether this is a "freak act" or a symptom of a bigger problem. 

 

For example, if the violence happened to a graduate TA in the department I was applying to, then that would be pretty uncomfortable to me. I do consider how safe I would feel at a school/city when deciding on PhD programs though. During a school visit, I heard a several very pro-gun commercials on the radio and multiple sources telling me stories about how gun laws are very liberal in that state (including stories of interactions where people would take out their guns and appreciate them in public places), and that definitely swayed me against attending that school.

 

I would not even describe myself as someone who is against gun ownership but my experience in that state definitely made me uncomfortable. Maybe my world view is very different though!

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I must admit, I was a little nervous when I heard about it, as I am interviewing at Purdue next month. But logically I know that these things can and have happened other places too. Including at least one other school at which I am interviewing, so... no. It doesn't really affect my decision.

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Over the past year, there has been an average of one school shooting every other day (admittidly, at all schools, not just universities). What this suggests to me, beside the fact the U.S. has a serious problem with violence and gun control, is that location/campus is irrelevant. This things can happen to anyone, anywhere. I didn't apply to Purdue, but if I had, it would have zero impact on my decision.

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