ILLINOIS -- Tens of thousands of people are filling classrooms around Illinois to learn how to use a gun. .
They are anticipating the state's new concealed carry law, which goes into effect next year.
Colleen Lawson, herself a crime victim, is one of the state's certified concealed carry instructors.
She's teaching the course the new law requires for concealed carry permit holders.
The 16-hour course deals with firearm safety, handling, marksmanship, and the law: that concealed carry is meant for self- protection.
"Your life must be in extreme danger in order to pull that trigger. I'm hoping to never have to do that," said Course Student, Marlow Davis.
"I don't want to be faced with a situation where all I have to respond to a bad guy is harsh language," said Course Student, Jim Wenger.
Unlike many other states, Illinois requires demonstrating shooting proficiency at a range.
You must hit the target at varying distances at least 21 out of 30 times.