T he 409 students who attend the Syracuse Institute of Technology joined with the rest of the nation to observe a moment of silence at 9:30 this morning in honor of the Newtown massacre victims, but they wanted to do more. So they gathered in front of the school for their own special ceremony.
" I t means that we care that there are people out here trying to be there for the families , so they're not alone during these rough times." said Kevin Caraballo who held up a banner on which he and other students expressed their condolences to the people of Newtown.
The students made up stars with the names of each of the victims and read them aloud along with a poem written by Kimber Emm who attends the school .
The ceremony culminated with the launch of green balloons, the Sandy Hook Elementary School color.
Today??s observance was not the idea of school leaders , it was the brainchild of 16 year old student, Mikaela David. "I just thought of my little brother and sister who are the same age as those who died and I couldn't imagine losing them... especially in such a horrible way. So I wanted to reach out to the families and provide support." Mikaela explained
M ikaela David is majoring in media studies. She and other students made a video of today's observance and will send it to the people of Newtown. Included in the video is something extra. Mikaela convinced more than a dozen of her classmates to openly express their feelings on camera.
"I t is hard to watch and I cried the other day." said Teacher Cheryl Molesky, "It's a real world experience and has a lot of meaning to them and they're also learning a lot of valuable information as well."
O ne week after the Newtown tragedy, as a nation continues to try to express its feelings, the teens at the Institute of Technology have found their own way.