Friday marked the third day in a row that a threat brought police to the campus of Tufts University in Medford and Somerville, the latest disruption during finals.
The university characterized it as a "security threat" — the previous days' had been called bomb threats — and the campus remained open Friday, where evacuations were undertaken Wednesday and Thursday.
"As we continue to assess recent threats against the university, please be assured that Tufts University Police are responding with our local partners to investigate each incident. Please be advised that you will continue to see increased police presence on campus," officials said in a campus alert, thanking the community for its "continued patience as we navigate this ongoing event."
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After Thursday's bomb threat and evacuations, the university moved remaining exams online.
On Thursday afternoon, Tufts University President Tony Monaco acknowledged that the "abhorrent and malicious threats against our university and our values" were "extremely difficult for our community." He said in the statement that police patrols were being increased "for the foreseeable future."
Here is Monaco's full statement:
Dear Tufts community members,
I recognize that the past two days have been extremely difficult for our community as we deal with abhorrent and malicious threats against our university and our values. I want to assure you that we remain committed to diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice in every corner of our institution. Our vibrant, diverse community, one that embraces learning from each other, gives our university its greatest strength. There is no greater priority for us than caring for the safety, well-being, and mental health of all our students and the entire community.
I remain deeply grateful to our Tufts University Police Department and the many other law enforcement agencies that are doing everything they can to keep our community safe during this challenging time. We are taking steps to ensure our ongoing safety and security, including increasing patrols on our Medford/Somerville campus, which was the target of the threats. These efforts will continue for the foreseeable future.
During this time, schools will be making decisions that are student-centered and keeping with what is best for their community. Exams for students in the schools of Arts and Sciences and Engineering have been moved online, and other graduate schools and professional degree programs are making local decisions based on the context and timing of their exams and the needs of their students. I want to thank all the faculty and staff who have been putting in extra hours and making extraordinary efforts to respond and adjust to these challenges.
I want to reiterate the supports that are available to our community. The University Chaplaincy, Counseling and Mental Health Services (CMHS), Ears for Peers, the Division of Student Diversity and Inclusion, the International Center, and the Dean of Student Affairs Office on the Medford/Somerville campus are all available to support you. You may also reach out to the Counselor-on-Call available 24/7 by calling 617-627-3360 and following the prompts. Faculty and staff are encouraged to reach out to the Tufts Employee Assistance Program and the University Chaplaincy if you need support during this time.
While we are limited by what we can share about the incidents due to the nature of the ongoing investigation, I can assure you that a robust and thorough investigation is taking place to determine who is behind these threats. I want you to know that we remain committed to our values, we will continue to uphold our principles, and we will move forward together.