New River Community College resumes classes for first time since - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

New River Community College resumes classes for first time since shooting

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Classes will resume Wednesday at New River Community College for the first time since a gunman opened fire at its NRV Mall campus, wounding two women.

School leaders say they feel it's appropriate to reopen now and they're ready to welcome students back to campus.

"We like to call ourselves a family at New River Community College and we really don't think that's an exaggeration," said Dr. Mark Rowh, spokesperson for NRCC.  "And this family is reaching out to one another.  Of course, it's going to be difficult."

The school will hold special gatherings at both its Dublin (10:00am) and NRV Mall (3:00pm) campuses to give students, faculty, and staff the chance to come together, reflect, and support one another.

In addition to their own counseling staff, NRCC officials say Virginia Tech and Radford have graciously sent members of their counseling teams to them to ensure there are plenty of mental health care professionals on hand to help any students that seek it.

Local law enforcement agencies have also offered their services to the college and will have an increased presence in and around campus for the next several days.

Rowh says he's hopeful students will also feel ready to return to class -- but if they're not, the school will try to work with them to finish the semester.

"We realize it will be difficult for some of our students, staff, and faculty," said Rowh.  "And we've made all the accommodations we can and we're going to be understanding with each individual case.  But we also look forward to getting back to finishing our semester."

The two victims are currently recovering from their injuries.  Authorities have not released their names, but say one is a student at NRCC and the other is a part-time employee at the college.

The alleged gunman, Neil MacInnis, has been charged with two counts of malicious wounding and two counts of using a firearm in the commission of a felony.  He returns to court in June.


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