Tomorrow marks 17 years since an event that forever changed American history, the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and The Pentagon.
In 2001, after Elon University students found out about the attacks on the World Trade Center, Leo Lambert, the president of Elon at the time, gave an address at that morning’s college coffee. But what those students felt that day is now a distant memory for students like Andrea Sheetz.
“I see it as a piece of history I don’t see it as something that was a part of my life,” she said.
Sheetz is part of this year's freshman class and was almost 2 years old when 9/11 happened. She says she doesn’t remember anything at all from that day.
“I’ve heard stories here and there but I really just know of the intense fear that was nationwide,” Sheetz said.
Mark Dalhouse, Director of Study USA and a professor of the freshman seminar course Global Experience, has based his course around 9/11. He says that none of his students remember that day and finds that to be really powerful.
“It’s one of those things that you don’t really think about until someone points that out,” Dalhouse said.
But even while those who don’t remember 9/11 get older Dalhouse believes that the conversation around it won’t change just yet.
“This is still very much with us and when that ends I don’t know but I think that’s why this conversation needs to keep happening,” Dalhouse said. “And in that sense it’s not just a historical event that happened and it’s over. I think the reverberations will be felt certainly through the rest of my life.”
But for Sheetz, she hopes her generation can learn from 9/11 and live beyond it.
“We are the way we are today because of it and I think we need to take a second to realize that and recognize what it has done for us good and bad… It truly is a part of our history,” Sheetz said.
Dalhouse said that the youngest person to die in 9/11 was a two year old girl. If she had survived she could have been a member of this year's freshman class.
There will also be several events on Elon’s campus to commemorate 9/11. The Student Government Association will be up putting flags around Young Commons to honor those who died in the attacks. The Alamance bells will be rung at the times in which the three attacks occurred, and the movie ‘United 93’ will be shown in LaRose Theatre in the Koury Business Center at 7 and 9 p.m.