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North Texas Community College Students Talk About 'Campus Carry' Law


A Texas law that allows licensed gun owners to carry a concealed handgun on community college campuses went into effect on Tuesday. At one North Texas school, student reaction was mixed.

Hareez Madhani is a student at Brookhaven College in Farmers Branch. He said the new law wasn’t even on his radar.

“It’s clearly not the best idea, especially whenever you consider the epidemic across the country, not only on campuses but within other public areas as well," Madhani said.

Student David Ferrer disagreed. He's a first-year mechanical engineering student at Brookhaven.

“Personally, I’d like to have the chance to defend myself than just sit there and have something happen," Ferrer said. "It’s hard to think about. No one wants to, but that’s just what it is.”

Ferrer said he debated the issue in his high school government class. The debate took place after a gunman shot and killed a student at North Lake College in Irving.

Victoria Pantchenko, a 30-year-old student who’s studying graphic design, said Brookhaven started sending out emails about the new law at the end of last semester.

“I understand the second amendment and the right of people, but it’s a student campus," Pantchenko said. "I go mostly at night to classes and it doesn’t make me feel safe at all. All the opposite.”

She said it’s hard to know if someone carrying a weapon is doing it for self-defense reasons or to do harm.

Stella M. Chávez is KERA’s immigration/demographics reporter/blogger. Her journalism roots run deep: She spent a decade and a half in newspapers – including seven years at The Dallas Morning News, where she covered education and won the Livingston Award for National Reporting, which is given annually to the best journalists across the country under age 35.