TEANECK N.J. — The election viewing party at Fairleigh Dickinson University was predominantly attended by supporters of Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.
The crowd would cheer every time Clinton was declared the victor of a state.
But as the night continued and President-Elect Donald Trump's victory became inevitable, students began crossing their fingers, closing their eyes in prayer or left early out of disappointment.
"I had a theory before that Trump was running just to run for President and if he won it would be kind of a big joke, but now that he's won it's like 'Ok, does he really want to be President?'" Fairleigh Dickinson Student Kelia McRay said.
"I just didn't think it would happen."
The upset shocked students, but some felt it revealed to them false conceptions.
"[The election] changed my views," Fairleigh Dickinson Student Rashana Butler said.
"When you think of a Republican you put certain adjectives and thoughts with it — then you find out your classmates and teachers are Republicans and you think 'you don't fit the stereotype I have.'
"It opened my eyes that you shouldn't be labeled to what party you belong to."
Despite national murmurs of extreme reactions to a Trump victory, the students at FDU accepted the outcome as a facet of free democracy.
"I think it's important for our community to continue to be agents of change," Assistant Director of Student Life and Operations Jocelyn Moses said. "I think the most important thing is about trust in the process."