Schaefer, 17, is one of 60 students from Parkland, Florida, who came to Colorado to work on an ill-fated connection between the two schools which are synonymous with dreams.
Many of the Parkland students had never heard of the Columbine high school shooting on April 20, 1999, which left 13 people dead in Littleton, CO.
"I feel like we're both going through the same thing, "Schaefer told CNN.
On the eve of the 19th anniversary of the Columbine massacre, the Parkland students, along with Columbine survivors, victims' families, current students and members of the Littleton community gathered Thursday night in a park just steps from the school.
They were there to remember those lost and vow to make their voices heard in the midterm elections and beyond .
Columbine students do not attend the anniversary of the shooting. Instead, students are urged to take part in community service.
Schaefer was inside her AP psych class on February 14 when bullets flew into her classroom. She hid under her teacher's desk. One student in the classroom, Carmen Schentrup was killed, others were injured. Today she can not forget the piercing sound of the gunshots and the eerie quiet in between. Columbine survivors: when will things get better?
'Phases of healing' take time
That question, what happened by Paula Reed, a teacher who survived the 1999 shooting, and still teaches at Columbine. She says things will get better for the Parkland survivors – but probably not right away.
"It does not take a lot of time to do the healing," she said.
Darian Williams can relate. The 16-year-old parkland sophomore remembers being barricaded inside a classroom – hearing the sirens and sensing the confusion in the moments after the shooting began. He lost a friend Joaquin Oliver.
"There's times when you think you're OK and then you start crying in class and it's pretty bad," he said.
Teens continue to speak
Littleton, CO. Many of them are teenagers, others are victims or members of victims. Parkland student Carlos Rodriguez spoke on behalf of Parkland students.
"Two months ago, Douglas faced what Columbine faced 19 years ago I had two months to understand what it's like to feel alone It's like we have a common voice, "he said. 19 years ago. "
His classmates could not agree more.
"It just shows that has really changed," Williams said.
"It's obviously crazy that [school shootings are] still happening to this day and [Columbine] what 19 years ago. We really need some change," Schaefer said.
Columbus Principal Frank DeAngelis read the names of the 13 people killed at the school in 1999. So he had a message for the students: "Go out and change the world."