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University of Bridgeport students who were sheltered during storm move back to residence halls: campus “well on its way” to full restoration

Leslie Geary
Thursday, November 01, 2012

One of many trees uprooted by Hurricane Sandy; UB crews quickly began removing stumps and turning them into usable wood chips.  View Photo Gallery >
Power is on, Marina Dining Hall is open, and students who were sheltered during the storm may return to their residence halls, said campus officials, who credited massive coordinated efforts for the speedy response to Hurricane Sandy.

There's even a fundraiser to support the Red Cross storm-relief efforts and East Coast Soccer semifinals scheduled for Friday, November 2.

“UB is well on its way to a full restoration,” said Vice President of Facilities George Estrada.

Returning students:

Students who were evacuated to shelters may return to residence halls except North and South Hall, said Dean of Students Edina Oestreicher.
 
Evacuated students from North and South Halls will continue to be sheltered at the Cox Student Center until heating and hot water are restored in those buildings.
 
To allow for residential life to provide adequate staffing, all other students who left campus may return after 12 p.m. noon Saturday, November 3.
 
 
Students at Cox Student Center stayed in touch and up to date on their laptops.
Classes and registration:
 
Classes will resume on Monday, November 5. Please check the University of Bridgeport website, myUB portal and the Emergency Notification Hotline at (203) 576-4159 for additional updates.
 
Registration for the spring semester and the last day to withdraw from fall classes has been rescheduled to Monday, November 12.
 
Soccer and a fundraiser:
 
In the interim, UB is hosting the East Coast Conference soccer semifinals on Friday, November 2, as scheduled. The women’s game will kick off vs. Queens College at 11:30 a.m. and the men’s team will follow with a 2 p.m. match vs. New York Institute of Technology.

“The power outage has set us back a few days, but we are now up and running!” said Athletics Director Jay Moran. “The events will be free of charge; however we’re accepting donations, with all proceeds going to the Red Cross Storm Relief Fund.”
 
In preparation for the game, the women’s soccer team was back doing drills on a spotless Knights Field by Thursday morning. Down the block, crews continued to remove storm debris.
 
 
The women’s soccer team returned to Knights Field in anticipation of the ECC semifinals on November 2, when the Purple Knights collected donations for Red Cross storm-relief efforts.
"We are grateful to our staff, faculty, students; they are a great example of a community coming together and making the best out of a really dire situation," said Vice President of University Relations Mary-Jane Foster. "Their dedication to helping each other and their optimism throughout the storm are to be commended."
 
A team response:

Officials credited maintenance, security, IT, and dining services personnel for the quick turnaround.
 
“There were extensive preparations prior to the storm that minimized damaged, and the City of Bridgeport provided loads of sand to protect buildings,” said Estrada. “Securitas, under the direction of Executive Director April Vournelis, did an incredible job of monitoring security on campus, when the entire South End of Bridgeport was in the dark, and at shelters where we evacuated our students; Bridgeport police worked closely with them to coordinate response efforts in and around campus. And due to the Memorandum of Understanding between our schools, Sacred Heart University assisted with the evacuation, shelter, and safety of our students.”

 
Dump trucks hauled away storm waste throughout campus.
Marina Dining Hall opened on Wednesday and resumed its regular dining schedule, but Sodexho Dining Services never ceased operations throughout the storm, delivering hot meals for students who were evacuated to shelters. It also provided meals to security personnel, including the Bridgeport police and National Guard, who were assigned to different stations on and around campus, said Sodexho General Manager Jenn Currier.

“I was impressed by how my staff pulled together to feed everyone,” said Currier. “Even though the students weren’t at home, it was a great feeling to be able to feed them and make them happy. Being able to give back to the Bridgeport Police, National Guard, and other individuals who always do a lot for everyone else gave us the ability to feel good about giving to those who go above and beyond everyday to keep us safe.”
 
Media contact: Leslie Geary, (203) 576-4625, lgeary@bridgeport.edu