Caleb Ecarma, Staff Writer
On Wednesday morning, Oct. 7, North Greenville University officials called in assistance from both local law enforcement and a bomb squad due to a banner being placed on the front of Turner Chapel with the words “Extinguish Yourself," a double entendre on the North Greenville slogan “Distinguish Yourself."
The banner was discovered by students and rumors quickly spread across the campus. After students discovered the banner and heard about the possible threat, they began using the popular social media app Yik Yak to inform the entire school. This app allows all individuals within a one mile radius to communicate directly and anonymously with each other, which made it the primary component in dispersing the news to all students on the campus.
Despite all the negative speculation, nothing harmful or out of the ordinary was found by the bomb squad after they made their sweep of the building. They proceeded to allow the regular scheduled 10 a.m. chapel service to continue.
NGU Campus Security Chief Rick Morris said, “It got really blown out of proportion [on social media] and people were making a lot of assumptions about what the sign meant, especially referring to other instances across the country regarding shootings. We never received any direct threat, though, we only saw the sign.”
During the chapel service, NGU Vice President of Campus Ministries Steven Crouse made the announcement that the incident was simply a prank and that the university was taking extra precautions to ensure the safety of the students.
“Students kept calling us and continuing to ignore the facts we provided. This is not our first rodeo, we know what we’re doing and know how to do it," said Morris. "There were a lot of rumors spreading the morning of and they were not based on fact. We gain nothing from lying to students, we need students' trust and cooperation."