BUFFALO, N.Y. -- This was not your normal class at Buffalo State on Thursday. It was full of students, faculty and administrators trying to lay the groundwork for action following the election of Donald Trump.
"We have the ability to be extremely well informed. Being highly informed is one of the greatest tools that we can offer and deploy in this effort to change the rhetoric as it's being presented right now," said Sue McCartney, director at Buffalo State's small business development center.
"I would just like to encourage you not fall asleep, take him at his word that he's going to make these moves, but see if you're here today then you’re ready to make your move also," said Anthony Neal, political science professor.
One student, Leah Tyrrell, says it was important for her to come out following some of the hate crimes allegedly committed locally and across the country after the election.
"I don't want this city to be a dangerous place for people to walk down the street," said Tyrrell. "So after speaking to younger students especially, and hearing their experiences, I knew that I wanted to be part of this forum to hear what the campus is going to be doing."
"We've seen a lot of the concern across the country particularly on college campuses and we thought it was important as one way of trying to address the concerns of not only our students but our faculty and staff, trying to figure out how do we move forward, how do we reconcile some of the distinctions that have obviously come across through the most recent election, but more importantly try to identify ways we could move forward together as one," said Clinton Jones, chief diversity officer.
Graduate student Monet Lewis says the forum reassured her the college stands with the students as they address many issues raised by the election.
"Hopefully now this lets us know that we do count and it does matter, and we do need to be educated and helping each other out instead of just pointing fingers," said Lewis.
School officials say they will continue to reach out to students and faculty and provide them with the resources they need to deal with any issues that might arise as the campus and the country moves forward.