I want to acknowledge that the tragedies of the past 10 days have left us all feeling an intense mix of emotions, from grief to anger to fear.

Dear Cougs,

I want to acknowledge that the tragedies of the past 10 days have left us all feeling an intense mix of emotions, from grief to anger to fear. As we mourn the lives the University of Idaho lost far too early, I want you all to know that your Cougar family is here for you.

Our utmost priority is your safety.

As classes resume next week, we have implemented the following safety protocols and resources:

  • WSU Police and Pullman Police have increased patrols on campus and in adjacent neighborhoods.
  • Cougar Safe Rides provides safe transportation to and from campus most nights, and is working on expanding their service days. Call or text WSU‑267‑SAFE (978‑267‑7233) to arrange a free ride.
  • The WSU Police Cadet Corps offers a free on foot escort service to and from campus most evenings. Call 509‑432‑3818 for details.
  • Bus routes are available for evening transportation. The Pullman Transit Wheat and Lentil routes run daily until 10 p.m.
    • For your personal safety and convenience, after dark you can ask your driver to let you off at any point along your bus route. It does not have to be a regular bus stop. For safety reasons, drivers are still required to make pick‑ups at designated bus stops only.
    • For the most up‑to‑date transit information, consider downloading the PTBusBeacon app, available for both Android and iOS.
  • If you are on campus and need immediate help, look for one of the many emergency blue light telephones located around the area. Push the button and you will be directly connected to the Whitcom 911 Communications Center.
  • WSU and the City of Pullman have installed street cameras on campus and in highly trafficked areas of College Hill (you may have seen the street signs). These are to help keep our community safe.

Additionally, we encourage everyone to look out for each other — Cougs help Cougs! This starts with “if you see something, say something.” Create safety plans such as: When in doubt, call 9‑1‑1 (if you’re unable to call, text 9‑1‑1). Partner with friends and classmates to walk in groups at night. If you’re able, turn on your porch light to increase neighborhood visibility. Be aware of your surroundings at all times. Tell others where you are going and consider a buddy system.

I recognize that even with these safety protocols in place, some of you may feel uneasy about returning to campus. The Provost’s Office has been working directly with Pullman faculty on all the options available for students, and have asked them to exercise understanding and grace throughout this trying time. You are welcome to contact your instructor directly if you want to explore alternative course delivery options. Please also consider contacting your academic advisor if you have additional questions about your academic options for the remainder of the semester.

I also want to remind you of the support services available to you:

  • After hours crisis phone: Call 509‑335‑2159 for WSU Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) after hours crisis counselors. Available on weekends, university holidays, and after 5 p.m. on weekdays.
  • CAPS crisis appointments: Call 509‑335‑4511 to schedule a same‑day in‑person or telehealth appointment.
  • Mobile mental health services are available anytime, anywhere, including phone access to live mental health support services after‑hours, a self‑guided therapy app, and anonymous and safe chat rooms to discuss mental health.
  • Crisis Text Line: Text HOME to 741741 for free, 24/7 support from volunteer Crisis Counselors.
  • Suicide and Crisis Lifeline: Call or text 988 for 24/7 support from trained counselors who can listen and provide support.

For information about more crisis and campus resources visit Cougar Health Services.

Please take the time this week to rest and recharge. If you are traveling back to Pullman, please keep an eye on the weather and prioritize your safety and the safety of those around you. Let’s continue to support each other and our communities. Together, we are #VandalStrong.

With gratitude,

Elizabeth S. Chilton
WSU Pullman Chancellor

Aerial view of the WSU Pullman campus.

Washington State University, PO Box 641227, Pullman, WA 99164‑1227

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