The start of Fall term is a time of new beginnings and excitement at COCC. We are delighted to welcome you to the College as you work toward your academic goals.
As we begin the new academic year, however, I want to reflect on a tragic event that took place this summer on our Bend Campus. The death of Kaylee Anne Sawyer, and the apparent involvement of one of our employees in that incident, is devastating to our College community. We know that you, as a student, may have questions regarding the safety of our campuses.
I want to assure you that while this event is deeply disturbing, it is an isolated incident and the College continues to provide services to support the needs of our students.
To help you process the range of emotions you may be feeling in relation to this tragic event, COCC’s Student Life Office will be hosting facilitated sessions designed for students. These sessions will provide a safe space to ask questions, dialogue with other students and learn about personal safety on our campuses. You will receive information about these events soon, via your COCC email.
Additionally, COCC’s Student Life and Campus Public Safety departments will jointly coordinate a “student safety escort program.” This service will be available to students who prefer to not walk alone on campus in the evenings. Learn more or schedule a safety escort by calling 541.383.7272.
Our CAP Center has increased availability for free personal counseling for students during this difficult time. Appointments can be scheduled by calling the CAP Center at 541.383.7200.
For those interested in additional details regarding the safety of our campuses, please visit the Campus Public Safety website: https://www.cocc.edu/public-safety/
Thank you all for your ongoing concern. As we move forward from this heartbreaking incident, please join me in keeping Kaylee’s family and friends in the forefront of our hearts and thoughts.
Thank you, and all of our best for the coming year.
Dr. Shirley I. Metcalf
President, Central Oregon Community College