Message From the President | Hurricane Sandy
Dear Members of the Fordham Family,
I am writing to give you an overview of how the University fared in the hurricane that has devastated the New York Metropolitan Area, and an update on our efforts to recover—and help our neighbors recover. I am happy to be able to report that, through the grace of God and the hard work of our staff, we came through the ordeal relatively unscathed: we sustained no injuries and no building damage on any of our campuses. We lost about a dozen trees at Rose Hill and a handful at the Westchester campus, and our research facility at Armonk sustained some slight damage and lost power.
In addition, on orders from the City we had to evacuate approximately 50 graduate students housed in a residence that Fordham rents around the corner from a construction site on West 57th Street, just east of 7th Avenue at which a construction crane failed, with the boom dangling above the street. (The city is currently working on stabilizing the boom preparatory to removing the crane from the site.) We were able to relocate all of the students in the nearby residence hall to McMahon Hall on the Lincoln Center campus. This incident also necessitated evacuating University administrative and academic departments renting space at 888 7th Avenue and 1790 Broadway. As of today the evacuation order has been lifted and all of those facilities have reopened.
On the advice of the mayor, and the city’s Office of Emergency Management, we did not hold classes on Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday of last week. In addition, since the problems associated with the region's mass transit systems were so grave, we opted not to resume classes until today.
On behalf of the entire Fordham community, I would like to thank those members of our staff who worked so hard to get us through the hurricane and its aftermath. In a special way, I would like to thank the members of the Facilities, Safety and Security, Student Life, and Food Service staffs who worked literally around the clock to make sure that our students were safe and that our buildings and campuses were secure when the hurricane hit. We are all in their debt, a debt that I am more than happy to acknowledge.
I should tell you that, with typical Fordham generosity, our students, faculty, and staff have already asked what we can to do to help alleviate the suffering of those whose lives have been most affected by the storm—within the University community and in the Tri-State area. Among other measures, we have:
- Set aside our limited available space for temporary housing to shelter students, faculty, and staff most affected by the storm.
- Counseling is available to all students as a matter of routine, and was available throughout the storm and in its aftermath.
- Established a Hurricane Relief Fund to collect donations that will be send to low-overhead organizations that already have operations up and running in the areas most affected by the storm. In addition, I have asked our Campus Ministry staff on all of our campuses to take up Hurricane Relief collections at all Masses and interfaith services for the rest of the semester.
- The University’s Community Service programs have also begun to work with agencies and volunteer organizations throughout the Metropolitan Area to organize outreach efforts in which members of the Fordham programs can participate.
More detailed information on all of these measures, and further resources, can be found in the accompanying update. In addition, if you or any member of the University community, are suffering from any difficulty because of the storm, please do not hesitate to bring it to the attention of the appropriate area:
Faculty and Staff:
- Campus Ministry at Lincoln Center: (212) 636-6267
- Campus Ministry at Rose Hill: (718) 817-4500
Although the University proper came through the storm in very good shape, the Fordham community has shared in the sufferings that have marked the lives of many people in the area: some have sustained severe flooding in their homes; others have lost their homes; still others have suffered from (and in some cases continue to suffer) the loss of power, heat and hot water; and all have had to wrestle (and in some cases are still wrestling) with the challenges posed by dealing with a mass transit system that has been severely crippled.
I know I speak for our extended Fordham family when I say that we hold all of you in our thoughts and prayers this week. I would ask, then, that you hold out just a little more compassion for one another, and for yourselves, as we struggle to recover from the storm.
Joseph M. McShane, S.J., President
Post Hurricane Sandy Update V | Monday, November 5, 2 p.m.
Fordham University Response to Hurricane Sandy: Since last week, Fordham has been mobilizing resources to assist members of the University community and our neighbors in the Tri-State area in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. The following is a snapshot of where our efforts stand as of today.
: Student Affairs staff are coordinating outreach to students who need help in the aftermath of the hurricane: anyone who knows of students who need emergency housing or assistance should contact the following staff:
Faculty and Staff:
The University has some single rooms in Loyola Hall on the Rose Hill campus that are available for up to five days to individual faculty and staff members most affected by the storm.
The accommodations are very spartan—no phone, Internet, nor television—but they are clean and dry and have power, heat, and hot water. The rooms come with a bed and clean linens, and access to community restrooms and showers. Members of the University community who have need of temporary housing should contact Jay Bartlett at (718) 817-3080 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Services have been available to students at Rose Hill and Lincoln Center throughout the emergency, and will continue to be available on both campuses.
For any mental health-related emergency during business hours, please contact the appropriate dean of students:
- Rose Hill: Christopher Rodgers, dean of students: (718) 817-4755;
- Lincoln Center/Westchester: Keith Eldredge, dean of students: (212) 636-6250).
After hours and on weekends, call Fordham's Safety and Security Department at (718) 817-2222.
Students, faculty, and staff with non-emergency concerns can contact Counseling and Psychological Services at (212) 636-6225 or Keith Eldredge, dean of students at Lincoln Center, at (212) 636-6250 with any questions about counseling services. Likewise, for pastoral counseling, please call Campus Ministry at Lincoln Center at (212) 636-6267.
Students, faculty, and staff with non-emergency needs can contact Counseling and Psychological Services at (718) 817-3725 or Christopher Rodgers, dean of students at Rose Hill, at (718) 817-4755. For pastoral counseling at Rose Hill, please call Campus Ministry at (718) 817-4500.
Resident students at Rose Hill and Lincoln Center may also contact resident assistants or resident directors for assistance.
The Federal Government has a website that allows people to apply for assistance online: http://www.disasterassistance.gov
This website consolidates the application process across several Federal agencies, including FEMA and the Small Business Administration. The website also reduces the number of forms applicants must ultimately have to fill out, shortens the time it takes to apply, and allows applicants to check the progress of their applications online.
Those who want to apply by phone can call 1-800-621-FEMA—(800) 621-3362.
Hurricane Sandy Relief Funds:
Fordham has established a relief fund to collect donations for several organizations that already have operations up and running in the areas most affected by the storm. These organizations have low overhead costs, ensuring that almost all of the money collected on campus will reach those for whom it is intended.
The University is taking up Hurricane Relief collections at all Masses and interfaith services for the rest of the semester, the donations to which will be put toward the Hurricane Sandy Fund:
Fordham Disaster Relief Fund
Office of the President
Fordham University, Bronx, NY 10458
Fordham’s Community Service programs have begun to work with agencies and volunteer organizations throughout the metropolitan area to organize outreach efforts in which members of the Fordham programs can participate. The main point of contact for these programs is Campus Ministry: http://www.fordham.edu/mission/mission_and_ministry/campus_ministry/index.asp