On Thursday, an active shooter training drill took place in Gen. Richard B. Myers Hall, including gunshots, loud noises, realistic-looking victims and staged perpetrators.
Participants in the drill included cadets from the Air Force ROTC Detachment 270 and the Kansas State University Police Department, in partnership with local emergency professionals. Between 50 to 60 ROTC cadets participated along with a squad of police officers.
The K-State Police created three 30-minute scenarios where cadets were either victims, shooters or bystanders in three different classrooms. The events took place between 4 and 6 p.m. and set-up began at 2:30 p.m. Thursday.
Participants were thoroughly checked before the event began. All cadets had protective equipment on them and weapons were checked to contain dummy rounds rather than real bullets. The building was also searched beforehand.
Two years ago, K-State was one of the first schools in the country to complete an active shooter drill with ROTC cadets involved.
Bradli Millington, public information officer for K-State Police, said he thinks the drill is beneficial because it incorporates the ALICE program, a training program all cadets learned.
ALICE stands for alert, lockdown, inform, counter and evacuate. Its goal is to help civilians be proactive and have a plan in response to violent situations.
Furthermore, Millington said incorporating ALICE makes it more like a real-life situation, which is also a good training opportunity for the K-State Police.
“It’ll give our guys good training in an active violence situation,” Millington said.
Due to widespread coverage of school shootings in the past few decades, Millington said active shooter training has been part of the K-State Police’s agenda for quite a while.
“We’ve been training like this for a good 10 years,” Millington said.
The cadets were not aware of what the situations were going to be beforehand. However, they did have a strong knowledge of the building they were in — Myers Hall is home to the Departments of Military Science and Aerospace Studies on campus.
“The ROTC program is there, so it’s easier to facilitate,” Millington said.
Millington also said using a multi-level building like Myers Hall allowed for more intensive training to prepare for active shooter situations.
The closest K-State has ever come to experiencing an active shooter event was in the early 2010s when there was an armed robber on the south end of campus.
For any active shooter on campus, Millington said the K-State Police have a plan: assess the threat, take care of the treat and then go through the recovery process.