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Northeastern responds to Boston Marathon tragedy

Two explosions occurred near the finish line of the 117th Boston Marathon on Monday afternoon, killing three people, leaving more than 140 injured, and creating a frightening scene during one of the city’s most cherished traditions that concludes only about a mile away from Northeastern’s main campus on Huntington Avenue.

“This harrowing incident has shocked and saddened all of us. It’s vital that we join together to draw strength and comfort from each other, and to support our home community, during this unsettling time,” President Joseph E. Aoun wrote in a message to the Northeastern community Monday night.

Northeastern will hold a vigil Tuesday at 4 p.m. in the Curry Student Center Ballroom.

Following the blasts, Northeastern public safety officials increased the amount of personnel on duty and coordinated with Boston emergency responders to assist the response effort. The Office of Student Affairs was in contact with student groups and members of the university community known to be participating in the marathon and related activities. Among them were Northeastern physical therapy faculty and students in the Bouvé College of Health Sciences who were volunteering in the first medical tent at the marathon finish line—which is part of an annual effort—when victims of the explosions were brought in for immediate treatment. The university also made arrangements to temporarily house any Northeastern student who may have been displaced from off-campus housing because of the incident.

Students in need of assistance may contact the WeCare program at wecare@neu.edu or 617-373-4384. Northeastern faculty and staff may contact the Employee Assistance Program at 877-739-3989.

On Tuesday, the Center for Spirituality, Dialogue, and Service will also make spiritual advisers and center staff available to students, faculty, and staff at 203 Ell Hall on a walk-in basis, or by appointment by calling 617-373-2728 or by sending an email to csds@neu.edu. The Sacred Space and Reflection Room in 200-203 Ell Hall will be open for private prayers and reflection. In addition, University Health and Counseling Services will be open Tuesday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Northeastern provided text message and email updates to the university community immediately following Monday’s events via NUAlerts, a service that allows university officials to reach all students and staff with time-sensitive information during unforeseen events or emergencies. Students, faculty, and staff are urged to make sure their contact information, including their emergency contact information, is updated. This can be done through the myNEU portal by first finding “self-service” under the “Services and Links” tab and then finding the section on contact information.