Morgan State University leaders have announced plans to construct a wall around the majority of their campus in northeast Baltimore following a shooting incident during homecoming festivities. The shooting, which left five people injured, occurred after a coronation ceremony for this year’s Mister and Miss Morgan State. University President David Wilson stated that the wall, extending existing barriers by approximately 8,000 feet, aims to encircle 90% of the campus and restrict access to prevent further incidents.
During a campus town hall, Wilson emphasized that the wall’s purpose is not to isolate the community but to deter potential threats. The university has canceled classes and homecoming activities for the remainder of the week and is now focused on enhancing student safety amidst the growing concern of gun violence in American schools.
Following the shooting, the campus was placed on lockdown, and students were instructed to shelter in place. Baltimore police, who believe the violence stemmed from a dispute involving two shooters, have released surveillance images of persons of interest and are seeking public assistance in identifying them. While no arrests have been made, all five victims, including four Morgan State students, have been released from local hospitals.
Prior to the shooting, the university had already initiated security upgrades. However, in light of recent events, they are now expediting these measures. In addition to the wall, potential upgrades include the installation of more metal detectors, exploration of weapons detection technology, increased police patrols, and the construction of additional security guard booths. The estimated cost for these security enhancements is over $22 million.
Morgan State University has experienced violence during previous homecoming celebrations, including a shooting in 2022 and a shooting incident involving a freshman in the preceding year. Founded in 1867, the historically Black university has approximately 9,000 students and aims to provide educational opportunities for Black citizens.
President Wilson assured the university community that the homecoming ball, disrupted by the shooting, will be rescheduled. He also shared a message from one of the injured students, expressing hope for a brighter future despite the current challenges.