EAST LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Effects are being felt in Michigan State University from the tragic news of Monday’s earthquake in Turkey and neighboring Syria.
The President of the Turkish Student Association at MSU, Hasan Bayhan, said after checking to see if his family was okay, his first priority was checking on the wellbeing of his fellow classmates from Turkey.
“I was at the library at Michigan State and the first thing I did was to call my friends over here,” he said.
Bayhan is a PhD student at the school. He said he’s pretty familiar with the area and used to being on his own. But he adds that newer Turkish students might not feel the same way, so he wanted to provide support as they search for answers.
“As I’m the president of the community, I contacted like everyone, if their families are fine, if we can provide some any kind of support. You know, psychological, or if they just want to talk to us,” Bayhan said.
He continued and said that only one thing is on his mind.
“Try to support them in any kind of way that we can. Because their families are pretty far away and some of them are pretty concerned about what happened. But so far again, we haven’t heard anything bad, so we’re happy for that,” he said.
Their meeting scheduled for later this month has been moved up to an earlier date, to help each other navigate during these tough times.
“We canceled that event, and we’re probably going to meet on Friday this week after the class hours to see each other and gather around and talk about what happened,” he said.
But thinking about what’s happening in his home country and the number of deaths isn’t an easy task.
“It’s not easy to talk about it, because it’s a huge number. But unfortunately, I think it’s going to be even higher,” Bayhan said.
So, for now, all they can do is monitor what’s happening from afar.
“We’re constantly assessing the situation at the moment,” Bayhan said.
Anyone who would like to donate to help can find information at the Turkish Embassy DC’s Twitter account.