September 11- in remembrance


Twelve years have passed since Sept. 11, 2001, in which 2,996 people lost their lives, more than 6,000 people were injured and an entire nation was shocked.

The resulting Operation Enduring Freedom left 2,000 more Americans killed, as well as 10,000 in Afghanistan, 38,00 from Ethiopia, 1,100 from Somalia and more.

This year, the Student Veterans at Oakland University and Center for Student Activities are honoring the first responders at a 9-11 Remembrance, Sept. 11 at 8:46 a.m. The memorial will take place between North and South Foundation Halls.

More than 63 percent of Oakland University students are between the ages of 17-22, according to Oakland Univeristy’s website. Many students were still in grade school when the attacks happened, and can barely  remember a world before Sept. 11.

The university shut down for the day in the wake of the attacks by President Gary Russi. 

The 9/11 issue of The Oakland Post has articles writing about a changed atmosphere on campus. 

Students gathered outside Hamilin Hall to pray and comfort one another. Content for the Oakland Post was set aside to make room for 9/11 coverage. Oakland University and the Oakland Post both struggled to make sense of what many call a senseless act.

While some articles of the Sept. 11 Oakland Post show OU overcome with an eerie quiet, others showed students embracing a newfound sense of community and volunteerism.

An article on the bottom of the front page urged readers to donate blood and help save lives. A photogaph in Page 3 shows students gathering in the Fireside Lounge to watch coverage of the attacks.

Twelve years later, both the nation and the campus are still feeling the aftermath of Sept. 11.

OU is full of those who remmeber the attacks, from “nontraditional” students to faculty and staff members. Members of the Student Veterans of Oakland Univeristy are among those sent overseas to Iraq, Afghanistan or other locations after Sept. 11.

The yearly memorial service, likely a permanent tradition on this and many other campuses, is just one of the reminders.

In the past twelve years, the sense of post-9/11 community and volunteerism has waned. Once a year, perhaps, we should bring it back.

In a world still ravaged with war, still both politically and economically reeling in the aftermath of a terrorist attack, maybe we’re asking the wrong question.

Instead of asking when things will get better, ask what we can collectively do to make things better.

Many choose to give blood as a tribute to the victims and first responders of the attacks. Others give money or volunteer their time and energy, doing what they can to make the world feel just a bit better.

OU’s student body is capable of doing great things for the world.

While college students aren’t kown for being the most financially well-off, we have the benefit of free time, energy and great ideas.

Ask yourself, what you could be doing to make the world safer? And if you’re not doing anything Wednesday morning, why not stop by the remembrance?