November 11, 2021
(NEW YORK) — Bomb threats forced evacuations at three major American universities Thursday evening, the latest in a series of scares at prestigious schools in the past few days.
Students at New York University were evacuated from four different locations in Manhattan, while similar scares played out on campuses at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge.
Cornell, Columbia, and Brown Universities all received threats on Sunday, while Ohio University and Miami University received threats on Saturday. Yale University received threats last Friday. All of those calls were found to be unsubstantiated.
It’s still unclear if Thursday’s incidents are linked to the earlier ones. However, authorities at Yale have said their threat could be connected to the ones from the weekend, the Yale Daily News reported.
At approximately 7:20 pm, NYU issued a community alert stating that the Stern School of Business, the Center for Neural Science, and the Hebrew Union College (which is an independent institution near campus) had received bomb threats. Hayden Hall, a nearby student residence building, was also evacuated an hour later.
Students in the building at the time said that fire alarms went off before police went knocking door to door.
“One of the first students who got an alert stepped out and came back in and was like, ‘We need to go right now,’” Luke Hampton, a second-year graduate student, told The Click. Hampton was in class in the Stern building when the alert went out.
“We all just left the building, we didn’t really know what was going on,” he said.
Students on NYU’s campus were mostly confused rather than panicked as they stood outside the evacuated buildings while the New York Police Department and campus security investigated. Louisa Farah, a law student and resident at Hayden Hall, said she had no idea when she would be let back in as of press time.
The Cambridge Police Department tweeted on Thursday evening that “no threats were located after a comprehensive search” at MIT.
Meanwhile, USC tweeted that “normal business has resumed” after the Los Angeles Police Department and the university’s Department of Public Safety deemed the situation safe.