Shotgun Club raises alarm on campus

Cassie Stone

A new club forming at Northern Kentucky University and its promotional materials are raising safety concerns for some students.

The Shotgun Club is a registered campus organization designed to bring interested students together to compete in trap and skeet shooting competitions, but the new club’s name choice made some students concerned that it might be promoting personal gun use.

“Yeah, the name can be alarming, but it’s just a team competing in a sport,” said Jill Kleiser, assistant director for recreational programs.

Kleiser said the university has authorized student-ran shooting clubs since 2005, formerly called Trap and Skeet and Shooting Sports Club. The Shotgun Club was given a more general name because club founder Justin Schwebler plans for the club to enter various types of contests.

No one has voiced safety concerns about previous shooting groups, Kleiser said. She cited other student groups that could be considered unsafe, such as archery and paintball, that NKU has allowed to form.

Schwebler said there is no need for safety concern from his new organization, either.

“Firearms are just pieces of metal and wood,” Schwebler said. “They take the same maturity as driving a car.”

The Shotgun Club and other groups like it face different challenges than other student groups because they must find somewhere off campus to meet and can never store their equipment on NKU property.

Schwebler said if team members plan to go to a meeting or practice after being at NKU, they will meet off campus to carpool and store their weapons at his home, if needed. He is also making arrangements for the club to meet at a shooting range in Crittenden.

Although the club plans to compete, Schwebler said they welcome people of all skill levels. There is no licensing or certification required to join, and new members do not need to bring their own firearms or ammunition. Anyone interested in attending a meeting can contact Schwebler at

Story by Cassie Stone

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  • Matthew

    See, there’s a prime example. My web browser, Google Chrome should be outlawed because in the last paragraph the word “who” was left by Chrome. I didn’t make that mistake. Chrome did. Chrome makes typos, and guns kill people.


  • Matthew

    People, relax. NKU is a University. Universities have a very realistic stereotype of being operated and staffed by people who are politically to the extreme left of the spectrum.

    If the leftist students who are “alarmed” by this new, United States Constitution inspired club, then perhaps they should also outlaw Microsoft Word for all the typos it has done. After all, it’s not the operator of the device, but the device itself that is the problem, right?


  • Ken

    Guns are tools no different from a hammer or a screw driver. Blaming a gun for something the person uses it for is no different than blaming the air plane for 9-11. Its stupid and I hope one day people who oppose activities like this realize how ignorant they sound.


  • Dan

    I think it is a shame that The Northerner is trying to shine negative light on this club before it has even been established. Obviously there will be no firearms on or near NKU’s campus so I don’t believe this club should raise any type of concern. Those who have joined or are interested in joining the shotgun club already have an interest in firearms and sporting clays. It is unfortunate that the title of this article wasn’t something unbiased.


  • Steve

    I am glad to see someone has taken the initiative to start a program like this at NKU. Too many people become stressed or worried when they hear the word gun for some reason. I think this club will allow students to experience how fun firearms can be an how safe they are when handled properly.

    I think this article, like many, attempts to raise concern over an issue that should not cause any concern. I will not begin ranting about the media to save time.

    Good luck to the club and have fun!


  • Jordan

    My personal experience in a shooting club while on campus was extremely positive. The competitive club passed on such “real world” skills as time management (finishing a 10 page paper AND getting in practice), team building (encouraging team mates, helping skill sets), money management (shooting IS NOT cheap) just to name a few.

    It also taught proper safety techniques in the handling, storing and maintenance of firearms, that sadly, many never receive.

    Perhaps the headline of Shotgun Club raises concerns for safety on campus is just a tag line to grab the readers attention, but it worries me that it could also be the knee jerk reaction of someone at hearing the word “shotgun”

    Firearm accidents happen, always after someone, somewhere failed to follow proper (and common sense) rules in how to handle/store/clean their firearm.


  • Daniel

    Raising alarm? Really? Sounds like there are student riots by the title, when there are undoubtedly more students interested in joining the club for a new opportunity than running scared warning other students. Maybe the writer shouldn’t try and spell out one side of a story before allowing others the chance to read the article.


  • David W

    I think clubs like this are fantastic. They promote gun safety and education in an enviorment that seen as fun and supportive. This gives young people a chance to spend time with other like minded students, forming life long friendships and premotes a sport that has some people uneasy. I am sure that if anyone protesting this club were to attend a ptactive or event they would find it as a safe and fun setting for all those involved. This is also evident in the fact the club supports any capability level. Meaning they will take the time to teach those that dont already know how to safely handle a firearm and not oly teach them safely, but will teach them how to excell in a very fun team sport. I wish the NKU Shotgun team all the best and good luck in th future.