Curry Professor and Youth-Nex Associate Director, Dewey Cornell, spoke to the Wall Street Journal about bomb threats at the University of Pittsburgh.
The shift in tactics is partly aimed at facilitating final exams this week at the campus with nearly 29,000 students in Pittsburgh’s bustling Oakland district. The change also suggests that the university, known as Pitt, may be concerned that automatic evacuations could give the person or people responsible for the threats just what they want: the power to disrupt a large campus at will.
“Bomb threats are rarely legitimate,” said Dewey Cornell, a forensic psychologist and expert on school safety at the University of Virginia, and evacuations aren’t always the best response. Dr. Cornell, who stressed that he was not second-guessing Pitt security officials and didn’t have their inside view, said people behind threats often just want to cause fright and disarray. “It is a no-win situation,” Dr. Cornell said. “You’re going to be criticized no matter what decision you make.”
Photo: Zuma Press
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