Monday, March 11, 2013

UNO-CHART Hosts Higher Education Leaders for Disaster Resistant University Workshop

CHART at UNOThe University's Center for Hazard Assessment, Response and Technology (UNO-CHART) hosts a Disaster Resistant University (DRU) Workshop, which allows members of the higher education community to share observations, learnings and experience on emergency planning and management, disaster mitigation and
disaster resilience.

In the wake of Hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Isaac, the University of New Orleans has taken the lead among area higher education institutions in creating expert research and study opportunities in the areas of emergency planning and management, disaster mitigation and disaster resilience.

One of the many projects recently spawned by the University's Center for Hazard Assessment, Response and Technology (UNO-CHART) is its Disaster Resistant University (DRU) Workshop, which allows members of the higher education community to connect observations and learnings on risk and possible ways to reduce those risks.

Nearly 150 guests and approximately 70 speakers from around the country are expected to attend the University's next DRU Workshop, "Linking Mitigation and Resilience," slated Wednesday through Friday, March 20-22, 2013 at the Lindy C. Boggs Conference Center on the Lakefront campus, 2000 Lakeshore Drive, said UNO-CHART researcher Maggie Olivier. The workshop is funded through the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Louisiana Governor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness and is approved for 12 core continuing education courses for Certified Floodplain Managers. A registration fee is $30 and the workshop is free for students and federal employees.

The goal of the workshop is "to share information by building and strengthening relationships across universities and colleges to effectively address campus mitigation nationwide," said Monica Teets Farris, director of UNO-CHART on the organization's website. "By having FEMA approved mitigation plans, universities will be eligible to apply for FEMA mitigation funding in the event of a disaster declaration. Also, thinking through these issues now can lessen the impact of a future disaster and ultimately allow for a quicker return to business operations and resumption of classes."

Next week's workshop sessions will include: defining resilience, university collections, multicampus planning, community-based recovery planning, project funding, information technology, communications practice and more. A host of UNO faculty, staff and students will present at the conference.

UNO Professor of Sociology Pamela J. Jenkins will set the tone for the conference with her presentation "Defining Safety for University: The Slippery Conceptual Slope."

In a segment on critical infrastructure, Ken d'Aquin of the University Computing Center will present: "Aligning Your IT Requirements with Resilient Resources."

UNO Assistant Professor of Planning and Urban Studies Earthea Nance will address "Transportation Safety" during a crisis.

John Kiefer, who is an associate professor, director of the University's MPA program and a renowned disaster resilience expert, will give a talk "The University as a Resilient Community: Analyzing Lessons Learned from Katrina."

UNO Interim Dean of Student Affairs Pam Rault will lead a talk entitled "Preparation for the Storm: Evacuating Students Prior to a Hurricane."

UNO Planning and Urban Studies Professor Michelle Thompson and Brittany Arceneaux of whodata.org will deliver a talk "Hoffman Triangle: Neighborhood Planning From the Inside Out."

UNO graduate students Nandini Sith and Marian Mormol will deliver a case study "Stormwater Management at the University of New Orleans."

Read more and register for the workshop >>
Read about the University's post-graduate certificate programs in hazard planning and hazard policy studies >>