The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

    Officials readying school for disasters

    The Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning Board of Trustees has created the Disaster Resistant University Program for all higher education institutions in the state.
    The program encourages universities to plan ahead for both natural and man-made disasters.
    The mission statement for the program is listed on Mississippi State University’s Disaster Resistant University Program Web site.
    Kacey Strickland, regulatory compliance director, said the program is a way to legitimize MSU’s hazard mitigation plan to FEMA.
    “[The Disaster Resistance University Program] is saying that FEMA approves of MSU’s hazard mitigation plan,” she said.
    According to the program’s Web site the hazard mitigation plan will seek to identify natural, man-made and technological hazards, estimate the potential losses that MSU could incur due to these hazards and propose responses to reduce MSU’s vulnerability.
    The purpose is to provide a safer university while ensuring that any interruption to MSU’s mission during a disaster and the subsequent recovery period is minimized.”
    Mike Brown, geosciences associate professor and development leader, said the program is supposed to help make MSU become aware of the areas it needs to improve on.
    “The purpose of this Disaster Resistant University Program is to have MSU take a look at itself and see where we are strong and where we are deficient and need to improve for future disasters,” Brown said.
    Brown said MSU is trying to become prepared to protect Mississippi State if something were to happen.
    “We are not coming up with answers, we are trying to make sure all the steps are in place to protect against disasters.”
    Jim Jones, office of campus planning and sustainability director, said the hazard mitigation plan is the document that will list the causes and reactions for the hazards and emergencies.
    “These are emergencies and hazards that could happen on campus,” Jones said. “We are trying to take each hazard and decide what we need to do to protect against these emergencies when and if they happen.”
    Outgoing Student Association President Braxton Coombs said he does not think anyone could be too prepared for a disaster.
    “I am happy to see that our university is taking initiatives to better prepare us for any crisis or disaster that may occur,” he said.
    Jones said the program is going to serve as a complementary role to the Crisis Action Team that is already in place at MSU.
    “The Crisis Action Team is formed to have an immediate response to emergencies,” Jones said. “We are trying to forecast these hazards and try to reduce the likelihood of them happening all together.”
    The committee for the hazard mitigation plan is made up of many individuals.
    “The committee is mainly composed of campus officials, administrators, professors and off-campus members,” Jones said.
    Brown said he thinks it is important to be prepared.
    “The world has changed,” Brown said. “We just live in a different place. We have to plan and make sure MSU stays on top of things and is ready for as many different types of disasters as possible.”
    Jones said he thinks it will probably take about a year for the program to be fully developed.
    MSU take a look at itself and see where we are strong and where we are deficient and need to improve for future disasters,” Brown said.
    He said program’s purpose is to become prepared to protect the MSU community if something were to happen.
    “We are not coming up with answers. We are trying to make sure all the steps are in place to protect against disasters,” he said.
    Stickland said the plan reflects the sense of responsibility MSU has assumed.
    “[The Disaster Resistance University Program] says we are being pro-active and not re-active. We are looking at hazards MSU faces and not waiting until something happens, but trying to prevent hazards.”
    Jim Jones, Office of Campus Planning and Sustainability director, said the hazard mitigation plan is a document which will list the causes and reactions for the hazards and emergencies.
    “These are emergencies and hazards that could happen on campus,” Jones said. “We are trying to take each hazard and decide what we need to do to protect against these emergencies when and if they happen.”
    Outgoing Student Association President Braxton Coombs said he does not think anyone could be too prepared for a disaster.
    “I am happy to see that our university is taking initiatives to better prepare us for any crisis or disaster that may occur,” he said.
    Jones said the program is going to serve as a complementary role to the Crisis Action Team already in place at MSU.
    “The Crisis Action Team is formed to have an immediate response to emergencies,” Jones said. “We are trying to forecast these hazards and try to reduce the likelihood of them happening all together.”
    The committee is mainly composed of campus officials, administrators, professors and off-campus members, he said.
    Brown said he thinks it is important to be prepared.
    “The world has changed,” he said. “We just live in a different place. We have to plan and make sure MSU stays on top of things and is ready for as many different types of disasters as possible.”
    Jones said he thinks the program will probably take about a year to be fully developed.

    Leave a Comment
    Donate to The Reflector

    Your donation will support the student journalists of Mississippi State University. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

    More to Discover
    Donate to The Reflector

    Comments (0)

    All The Reflector Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    Activate Search
    The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University
    Officials readying school for disasters