UMass Chancellor details days following Boston Bombings - ABC6 - Providence, RI and New Bedford, MA News, Weather

UMass Chancellor details days following Boston Bombings

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By: Melissa Toupin


A fresh start for UMass Dartmouth. The school is in the midst of renovations while students and faculty try to come to terms with the disruptive events caused by the Boston marathon bombings.

"This was unthinkable and unimaginable. No one could have predicted something like this," said Divina Grossman, Chancellor at UMass Dartmouth.

Days after 3 were killed, and countless more injured at the finish line, new Chancellor Divina Grossman made a chilling and starling discovery. Suspect number two, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, was a student at UMass Dartmouth.

"To know that that student, that suspect, was our student; I mean I was just horrified," said Grossman. 

As the manhunt unfolded, Grossman was forced to make tough decisions. The campus went into lockdown. Black hawk helicopters swarmed, investigators searched every inch, not knowing that 3 of Tsarnaev's fellow classmates had already gotten rid of evidence left in his dorm room.

"I think that was just, that just added to that sense of disbelief. How could that happen here,? asked Grossman. 

As she walks the campus today, Grossman can't put out of her mind the eerie feeling she gets, knowing that in the days following the bombings,  Tsarnaev had returned to UMass.

She said, "That day that I was having a vigil with 300 people, that he was here, that that student was here"

The Chancellor is appointing an independent task force to assess the universities response to the events. They are working to relieve any student or parent fears, and remove any stigma from their name.

" I don't think they see it that way. I think they understand this was unforeseeable, and they know it's something that could happen anywhere," said Grossman.

UMass Dartmouth won't be defined by the actions of a few, the school is rising above the adversity, and building a better future.


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