Though it's an eerie comparison, 24-year-old James Holmes is not so different from the average student on campus. Once described as a quiet, former grad student, Holmes is now described as a heartless, alleged murderer.
Here on UNK's campus, officials are well aware that disasters of many types can strike at any time, anywhere. This morning as details of the movie theater shooting spree tragedy broke in Colorado, a campus group was preparing themselves for such a tragedy.
"Faculty, staff, we have people from all different departments here who are concerned enough about the safety of the students and the safety of the community that they felt it was worthwhile enough to spend two and a half days learning this training. I'm thrilled to be a part of a community like that," said Cindy Shultz.
After two days of sitting in a classroom, the group got to apply what they learned in a staged setting.
"We do this type of thing, mock drills, education, reinforcing those learnings we've had just in case something like that does happen," Shultz said.
Members of the training session received backpacks with a variety of safety features, such as hard hats and whistles so they can help in any type of emergency.
Though they hope and pray they'll never have a tragedy like the one in Aurora, UNK officials say regular citizens need to be prepared to help first responders.
"If you have a large-scale emergency, first responders will be overwhelmed with calls and any time that we can prepare ourselves as citizens to help ourselves or our neighbors that just helps lessen the injuries or damage that could occur," said Michelle Hamaker.