Virginia Tech alumni express shock

DUBAI — Dubai-based alumni of Virginia Tech have expressed shock over the recent shooting on campus which killed 32 people.

By Criselda E. Diala

Published: Fri 20 Apr 2007, 9:35 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 1:43 AM

Muhammad Ahmad Chughtai, a Pakistani national who studied Electrical Engineering in the univerisity a couple of years ago, and Mohammad Khawaja, a Palestinian who graduated only in July last year from Virginia Tech, said they had got in touch with their friends and teachers who were on the campus when the shooting occurred on Tuesday. Both Chughtai and Khawaja were born and raised in Dubai and have returned to the emirate after completing their education in the US.

Chughtai said, the incident was ‘so shocking and devastating that no words can describe it’.

What was more shocking, he said, was the fact that the college town in Blacksburg, which has more than 26,000 students, has always been a peaceful multi-cultural community.

“You would think that shootings happen only in big cities where there are gangsters. But the recent incidet makes you wonder that if it can happen in a place like Blacksburg, Virginia, it can happen anywhere in the world.”

He added that Virginia Tech has its alumni based in various parts of the Middle East like the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Qatar, Lebanon, and Syria. The institute, however, does not have a formal alumni association in the region.

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