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Hurricane Irma Updates

As the University returns to normal operations following Hurricane Irma, see below for updates and additional information.

Update #13, Sept. 14, 4:20 p.m.

A Message of Gratitude from President P. Barry Butler

The spirit of Embry-Riddle has been on full display before, during and immediately after Hurricane Irma carved a path through Florida, affecting the Daytona Beach Campus as well as dozens of Worldwide locations throughout the Southeast.

The Office of Housing and Residence Life worked tirelessly to ensure that every Daytona Beach residential student had a hurricane-safety plan. Our Campus Safety and Facilities teams put emergency operations into place. To ensure that students always had access to good nutrition, Sodexo food-service personnel were among the last to leave and the first to return to campus. Colleagues on the Prescott Campus staffed telephone lines around the clock. More than 60 flight instructors assisted with relocating airplanes to Alabama, where we were grateful to be hosted by Auburn University and Atlantic Aviation in Birmingham. As soon as the storm had passed, cleanup crews got to work immediately, and Embry-Riddle invited off-campus students to make use of dining services as well as the Eagle Fitness Center.

Throughout this challenge, I have been inspired by many examples of Eagles helping Eagles – and being of service to the broader community, too.

At the institutional level, Embry-Riddle donated more than 600 boxed lunches to an area shelter in need of food. We also provided a staging location for local law-enforcement officials. Several Eagles volunteered to help out at Halifax Hospital during the storm. A dozen students volunteered to serve as “Shelter Captains” who accompanied a small group of students to shelters during the storm. After the storm had passed, we opened our dining hall to some 100 student-athletes from Bethune-Cookman University. Through a partnership with the Daytona Beach Police Department, faculty members and students used drones to help assess the storm’s impacts on Volusia County infrastructure.

At the individual level, I have heard of many Embry-Riddle students sharing rides, food and shelter.

I am encouraged by these stories of leadership and community service. I would like to learn more about how Eagles helped Eagles – and others – as we faced Hurricane Irma together. Please share your stories by emailing University Communications. Send us your photos, too! Upload multimedia by Sept. 21 at 11 pm to our “Eagles Helping” Dropbox site. (Include your name and contact information.)

To students, faculty and staff who were able to be here for today’s reopening of our Daytona Beach Campus – welcome back! For those still on their post-hurricane journeys – please remember to put safety first. We will look forward to seeing you when it’s safe for you to travel. Students may contact their professors as well as the Daytona Beach Dean of Students Office (386-226-6326) to report a travel delay. Only about 3 percent of students have reported travel delays, and again, we are firmly committed to working with each on an individual basis. Those students should rest assured that we will help them catch up as soon as they are back on campus.

 

Update #12, Sept. 13, 12:55 p.m.

Worldwide Headquarters, Campus Location Re-openings

Embry-Riddle Worldwide campus locations in the storm’s path have been reporting conditions and status with senior leadership as well as communicating with their students, faculty and staff.

Embry-Riddle Worldwide Headquarters, based in Daytona Beach, Fla., will reopen Thursday, Sept. 14.

The following Worldwide locations have announced when they are open as of today. Updates of remaining campuses will be posted as re-open date are confirmed.

  • Florida – Fort Walton Beach, Crestview, Hurlburt Field, Tyndall, St. Petersburg, Tampa, Miami, Space Coast, Fort Lauderdale
  • Georgia – Moody, Robins, Fort Benning, Atlanta, Savannah (Pooler), Hunter Army Airfield
  • South Carolina – Greenville, Shaw, Charleston, North Charleston, Beaufort
  • Alabama – Huntsville 

The following campuses remain closed today, and updates on re-opening will be provided as soon as possible.

  • Florida – Orlando, Jacksonville-Fleming Island, Jacksonville-NAS, Jacksonville-Mayport (scheduled to re-open Thursday, Sept. 14, but subject to change upon today’s assessment of campuses’ condition)

 

Update #11, Sept. 13, 10:55 a.m. 

Daytona Beach Campus Urges Students to Put Safety First as They Prepare to Resume Classes and Campus Life

Embry-Riddle’s Daytona Beach, Fla., campus will reopen on Thursday, Sept. 14. University leadership urges individual students to put safety first and return only when it is safe and feasible to do so, given travel- and weather-related challenges in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma.

Students who are unable to return to campus tomorrow will not be penalized in any way, and in fact, they will receive individualized support so that they can swiftly get back into the flow of classes and campus life. Faculty, staff and leadership across campus are preparing to provide one-on-one academic support, “make-up” classes, as needed, and guidance to all students, to ensure a smooth transition back to the regular academic calendar.

Students who wish to report a travel delay should contact their professors as well as the Daytona Beach Dean of Students Office at dbdos@erau.edu (386-226-6326). Parents who have any questions may call the University’s special assistance line, which has been well-supported by a team at Embry-Riddle’s Prescott, Ariz., campus: 386-226-6100, or toll-free, 800-862-2416.

Many residential students are already back on campus, food service is up and running, and power has been restored to all facilities, including the Student Village. Off-campus student apartments have power. (Those who have concerns should contact their apartment manager or landlord.) Off-campus students without power were invited to make use of the Student Center, dining services, Internet / Wi-Fi and Eagle Fitness Center. As of today, most debris had been cleared from the University’s Daytona Beach Campus, and the University’s fleet of airplanes began safely returning from Birmingham and Auburn, Ala., where they had been relocated prior to the storm.

Returning to the University’s regular academic calendar on Thursday will ensure that all academic programs continue to meet accreditation requirements as well as the University’s own educational standards of excellence. The campus reopening will also help students avoid the inconvenience of a potential school-year extension.

As part of its commitment to individual students, however, the University stressed that it would work with every student on a case-by-case basis, as students plan for a safe return to campus. Students should not take any risks by rushing if circumstances prevent their immediate return on Thursday, the University emphasized.

Please continue to follow updates posted to the Embry-Riddle Newsroom as well as the University's main websiteDaytona Beach Campus Website, internal web portal (ERNIE) and the Daytona Beach Campus Facebook page. 

Update #10, Sept. 12, 12:25 p.m.

Off-Campus Student Resources Announced; Power Restored to Student Village

Our thoughts and prayers continue to go out to the many areas of Florida that continue to struggle. Around Embry-Riddle’s Daytona Beach, Fla., campus, many areas are returning to normal. Businesses are reopening and power continues to be restored. On campus, our last building that was without power (the Student Village) is now back on. All local curfews have been lifted, but please observe caution while driving.

Off-campus students who are without power are invited to go to our Student Center beginning today (Tuesday) to utilize dining services and access Internet and Wi-Fi. In addition, they will be able to shower and work out at the Eagle Fitness Center (until 5 p.m. today, for instance). Off-campus students must bring their Eagle Card as identification.

Many of our students within driving distance are now checking back into the residence halls, food service is up and running and other student services are quickly returning to normal operations.

Campus will reopen on Thursday. We fully understand that some students may encounter challenges that may prevent them from returning until Monday.

Per our earlier messages, the University wants to reassure all students and parents that faculty and staff will not penalize students who are unavoidably absent due to weather and travel-related absences.

Like all universities, Embry-Riddle’s academic accreditation depends upon fulfillment of specified “contact hours” for each program. Therefore, returning to our regular academic calendar will allow us to complete the semester without causing inconvenience to students by extending the school year. However, we will work with each student individually to assess academic and tutoring needs as well as the need for any “make-up” classes, based on the unique requirements of each specific program.

Faculty and staff are asked to please refrain from returning to campus until Thursday, unless they are specifically requested to do so.


Update #9 - 2:25 p.m., Monday, September 11, 2017

Hurricane Irma Update from Campus Safety & Security: Campus Assessment, Classes to Resume Thursday

As Hurricane Irma struck our state and continues to affect areas north of us, our thoughts and prayers are with everyone now dealing with recovery and cleanup as well as those still in its path as a tropical storm--including several of our Embry-Riddle Worldwide campus locations.

All residential students transported by the university to local shelters on Saturday have been safely relocated back to campus and are receiving hot meals. 

The Daytona Beach Campus, administrative offices, and Embry-Riddle Worldwide Headquarters fared well in the aftermath with little to no damage. Power is on to all facilities with the exception of the Student Village. 

In consideration of the many students, staff, and faculty that evacuated to safety around the country and are trying to make return travel plans, we have expanded the closure through Wednesday with classes resuming Thursday. 

Students, staff, and faculty are asked to not return to campus unless you are specifically requested to do so.

Students who live in residence halls will be allowed to return to campus. If you are a resident of the Student Village and your travel plans bring you back before power is restored, we are working on a plan to provide accommodations. 

Faculty and staff will exercise leniency concerning weather- and travel-related absences. 

Please continue to follow updates posted to the Embry-Riddle Newsroom as well as the University's main website, Daytona Beach Campus Website, internal web portal (ERNIE) and the Daytona Beach Campus Facebook page. 

Parents who have any questions may call 386-226-6100, or toll-free, 800-862-2416.


Update #8, Sept. 9, 4:05 p.m.

Additional Worldwide Campus Closures in Georgia, South Carolina: 

As of Saturday, Sept. 9, the following additional Worldwide campus locations have announced closures in preparation for potential impact from Hurricane Irma: 

  • Georgia - Robins AFB (closed Monday, Sept. 11-Tuesday, Sept. 12 -- subject to change); Atlanta (closed Monday, Sept. 11-Wednesday, Sept. 13); Columbus/Ft. Benning (closed Monday, Sept. 11-Wednesday, Sept. 13). 
  • South Carolina - North Charleston and Charleston AFB campuses (closed until further notice); Savannah Area campuses/Pooler and Hunter AAF (closed through Wednesday, Sept. 13). 

Please see earlier updates for previously announced closures. 

Update #7, Sept. 9, 2:50 p.m.

Hurricane IRMA Update: Small Group of Students Safely Transported to Shelters

Thirty-six Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University students were safely transported to several Volusia County, Fla., shelters on Saturday morning, Sept. 9, after being offered a hot breakfast and boxed lunches--well before Hurricane Irma reached the area. 

The students were accompanied by about a dozen "shelter captains"--specially trained student volunteers who will remain with their groups until the storm has passed Volusia County.

Shelter Captains have been instructed to have students in their groups contact their families as soon as they are safely in place at the shelters. 

The University's Office of Housing/Residence Life had worked diligently to contact and account for all resident students at the University's Daytona Beach, Fla., campus. Students had also been given the option to work as volunteers at Halifax Hospital during the storm.

Embry-Riddle leadership emphasized that no students, staff or faculty will be allowed back on campus until it has been deemed safe to reopen. Essential staff will be directed as necessary. To ensure the safety of students and personnel, the campus will remain closed until the University has fully addressed any potential power or water outages, failures of critical life-safety systems, downed power lines or structural damage. 

Further information regarding reopening of the campus will be provided no later than 5 p.m. on Monday. Updates are also being posted to the Embry-Riddle Newsroom as well as the University's main website, Daytona Beach Campus website, internal web portal (ERNIE) and the Daytona Beach Campus Facebook page. 

Parents who have any questions may call 386-226-6100, or toll-free, 800-862-2416.

Embry-Riddle Assists Local Authorities

As the storm approached, meanwhile, as part of a partnership with the Daytona Beach Police Department, Embry-Riddle faculty and students were gearing up to use small unmanned aircraft systems (sUAS), enhanced by "augmented reality" software, to assist Volusia County authorities in assessing critical infrastructure--from schools and hospitals to food-distribution centers. This summer, the Embry-Riddle group conducted what is believed to be the nation's first test of small drones equipped with augmented reality software to assist first responders at disaster scenes in Oklahoma.

As reported by ABC Action News (WFTS), high school students in the Pasco County, Fla., area who are pursuing Embry-Riddle College credits as part of a drone-training program were also planning to assist authorities in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma. 

Campus Safety & Security

Update #6, Sept. 8, 5:30 p.m.  

New Embry-Riddle Worldwide Location Closures in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina

As of Friday, Sept. 8 the following additional Worldwide campus locations have announced closures in preparation for potential impact from Hurricane Irma:

  • Florida – Fort Walton Beach, Crestview and Hurlburt Field (closed today through Monday, Sept. 11); Tyndall (closed Monday, Sept. 11 – subject to change)
  • Georgia – Moody (closed Monday, Sept. 11-Tuesday, Sept. 12)
  • South Carolina – Beaufort and Shaw Air Force Base (closed today through Wednesday, Sept. 13 – subject to change), Greenville (closed Monday, Sept. 11 through Wednesday, Sept. 13)

Please note that Embry-Riddle Worldwide headquarters and administrative offices located in Daytona Beach, Fla., are closed through Tuesday, Sept. 12.

Online classes are ongoing. If you are an online student impacted by the hurricane, you should contact your instructor immediately. As soon as headquarters opens, campus administration will be processing all needs including registrations, drops, financial aid, etc. Faculty, staff and administration do understand the impact of this is felt both at physical campuses and online. Students can access Canvas support 24/7 at erau.instructure.com or by calling (844) 334-7579. 

Update #5, Sept. 7, 7:45 p.m.

Shelters to Open on Saturday

As Embry-Riddle prepares for Hurricane Irma, plans are being made to provide approximately 65 students with a hot breakfast, boxed lunches and transportation to area shelters as soon as they are opened by Volusia County Emergency Management on Saturday morning, Sept. 9.

The students, accompanied by “shelter captains,” will be transported in three groups to three different area shelters. Those students will receive further instructions directly from the University’s Office of Housing/Residence Life, which has been working diligently to contact and account for all students enrolled at the Daytona Beach, Fla., campus.

Shelter captains – specially trained student volunteers – will be instructed to have students in their groups contact their families as soon as they are safely in place at the shelters.

As of Sept. 7, 65 students requested assistance in reaching shelters as soon as they open. Today, Volusia County announced plans to open shelters on Saturday. Students also have been given the option to work as volunteers at Halifax Hospital during the storm.

No students will be allowed back on campus until the University has officially deemed it safe to reopen.

Further information regarding reopening of the campus will be provided no later than Monday. Updates are also being posted to the Embry-Riddle Newsroom as well as the University’s main website, Daytona Beach Campus website and the Daytona Beach Campus Facebook page.

Parents who have any questions may call 386-226-6100, or toll-free, 800-862-2416.

Although Hurricane Irma’s exact impacts on the Daytona Beach area remain uncertain, Embry-Riddle’s Emergency Operations Team has been taking the storm very seriously. The campus closed on Wednesday, Sept. 6 to allow students and employees enough time to put a hurricane-safety plan into place. The campus will remain closed through Tuesday, Sept. 12. Significant efforts are meanwhile underway to prepare all campus facilities for the storm, to help minimize damage and ensure the speediest possible return to safe, normal operations. Embry-Riddle will also provide a staging area for law-enforcement and utility personnel during the storm.

Update #4, Sept. 7, 7:05 p.m.

Embry-Riddle Worldwide Location Closures in Florida

A reminder that Worldwide headquarters and administrative offices based in Daytona Beach are closed through Tuesday, Sept. 12 due to Hurricane Irma. Worldwide campus locations in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Tampa, St. Petersburg and Space Coast/Brevard County are closed through Tuesday, and the Jacksonville Area (Fleming Island, Mayport and NAS Jacksonville) campuses are closed though Wednesday, Sept. 13. Closures at campuses in other potentially impacted states including Georgia and South Carolina will be announced soon. Campus Directors are directly contacting students, staff and faculty with information.

Update #3, Sept. 6, noon

Embry-Riddle to Close Daytona Beach Campuses at 5 p.m. Wednesday Through Tuesday Due to Hurricane Irma

To ensure the safety of its students, staff and faculty, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University will close its Daytona Beach Campus, Worldwide headquarters and University administrative offices in Volusia County at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 6, in light of Hurricane Irma’s potential impacts on the region.

The campuses will remain closed from Wednesday evening through Tuesday, Sept. 12. Further information regarding the reopening of the campuses will be provided no later than Monday, Sept. 11.

All students are urged to let their families know their relocation plans as soon as possible.

All campus activities scheduled from 5 p.m. Wednesday through Tuesday are officially canceled. The University is also monitoring its Worldwide Campus locations within Hurricane Irma’s forecasted path. Worldwide campus directors have been urged to take all necessary precautions to ensure the safety of their students and personnel.

For students residing in residence halls who are not able to evacuate immediately, residence halls will remain open, and dining services will be provided to students until area shelters open to accommodate them, as designated by Volusia County Emergency Management. These students should advise the Embry-Riddle Office of Housing/Residence Life of their needs for assistance. Transportation to local shelters will then be coordinated. 

Additional resources are listed below, for students residing both on and off-campus, and their families:

Further information regarding reopening of the campus will be provided no later than Monday. Updates are also being posted to the Embry-Riddle Newsroom as well as the University’s main website, Daytona Beach Campus website, internal web portal (ERNIE) and the Daytona Beach Campus Facebook page.

Parents who have any questions may call 386-226-6100, or toll-free, 800-862-2416.

University officials noted that although Hurricane Irma’s exact future path remains uncertain, Embry-Riddle’s top priority is the safety of students and personnel. Although the storm’s impacts are not likely to be felt in Central Florida until later this weekend, the University wanted to ensure that everyone has sufficient time to put hurricane safety plans into place.

Update #2, Sept. 6, 8:52 a.m

The Emergency Operations Team at Embry-Riddle’s Daytona Beach, Fla., campus is continuing to closely track the path of Hurricane Irma and will meet daily to review the best available hurricane-tracking forecasts. University leadership will provide updates by close of business each day for potentially affected campuses.

The next update will be emailed and posted by 5:00 pm EST today – Wednesday, Sept. 6 – to the Embry-Riddle Newsroom as well as ERNIE regarding plans to ensure the safety of students, faculty and staff over the coming week. Hurricane-related information will also be posted to social media and updated on a daily basis.

It remains unclear, as of this writing, how Hurricane Irma might affect our Daytona Beach Campus or Embry-Riddle’s Florida-based Worldwide campuses. As we noted yesterday, everyone in the forecasting “cone of uncertainty” should review their hurricane preparedness and evacuation plans now. If conditions require the University to close and evacuate the campus, information concerning local shelters, as identified by Volusia County Emergency Management, will be provided and students will be assisted in getting there, if needed.

Students are urged to keep in close contact with their families and review the following resources:

•    National Hurricane Center
•    Volusia County Emergency Management
•    Volusia County Preparedness Information
•    Volusia County Shelter Information

We understand that some parents may wish to arrange for transportation and alternate lodging for their students now. Faculty members will exercise leniency regarding any hurricane-related absences.

Parents who have any questions may call 386-226-6100, or toll-free, 800-862-2416.
 

Update #1, Sept. 5, 12:49 p.m.

Emergency-management personnel at Embry-Riddle’s Daytona Beach, Fla., campus are closely tracking the path of Hurricane Irma. Please be assured that the University’s top priority is your safety and security, and we are planning for all possible contingencies.

While Hurricane Irma is still several days away from potentially having an impact on Florida, it is a dangerous storm that should be taken very seriously. As of this writing, the National Hurricane Center is reporting that Irma is now an extremely dangerous Category 5 storm. Hurricane warnings and watches have been issued for regions across the Caribbean.

At this time, it is unclear how Irma might affect our area. The campus will begin providing daily updates as we receive more information regarding the storm’s track and its effect on the Daytona Beach area. Look for updates via the Embry-Riddle Newsroom as well as ERNIE.

Students and staff should carefully review their hurricane preparedness and evacuation plans now. If conditions require the University to close and evacuate the campus, information concerning local shelters, as identified by Volusia County Emergency Management, will be provided and students will be assisted in getting there, if needed. As forecasting models become increasingly accurate, we will make decisions at the earliest possible opportunity.

We understand that some parents may wish to preemptively arrange for transportation and alternate lodging for their students now. Faculty members will be instructed to exercise leniency regarding any hurricane-related absences. Students are encouraged to keep in close contact with their parents.

Parents who have any questions may call 386-226-6100, or toll-free, 800-862-2416.

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Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, the world’s largest, fully accredited university specializing in aviation and aerospace, is a nonprofit, independent institution offering more than 80 baccalaureate, master’s and Ph.D. degree programs in its colleges of Arts & Sciences, Aviation, Business, Engineering and Security & Intelligence. Embry-Riddle educates students at residential campuses in Daytona Beach, Fla., and Prescott, Ariz., through the Worldwide Campus with more than 125 locations in the United States, Europe, Asia and the Middle East, and through online programs. The university is a major research center, seeking solutions to real-world problems in partnership with the aerospace industry, other universities and government agencies. For more information, visit erau.edu, follow us on Twitter (@EmbryRiddle) and facebook.com/EmbryRiddleUniversity, and find expert videos at YouTube.com/EmbryRiddleUniv.