Three nooses found hanging from trees on the campus of the University of Delaware are being investigated as a hate crime.

Interim university President Nancy Targett said in a statement early Wednesday morning that a student found the items hang from a tree in front of Mitchell Hall, according to The News Journal.

The newspaper reports Gerti Wilson, a senior, found three makeshift nooses and immediately started running toward a nearby residence hall.

“I’ve been called the n-word multiple times, she told The News Journal. “I’ve dealt with a lot of racial BS at this campus, but never, never in my wildest imagination did I think in my last year here... that in the middle of the night I would run up to a tree with three nooses hanging up there.”

Another student, Morgan Franklin, said she broke down in tears at the sight of the nooses and called the incident “sad and disheartening.” Franklin said it’s not the first time she’s felt unsafe on campus .

“I know that my safety is not a concern,” she said.

Targett said such “cowardly and reprehensible” acts won’t be tolerated and she said the university will work to identify those responsible and hold them accountable. University police are investigating.

The statement said a campuswide gathering would be held Wednesday, but no further details were immediately available.

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.