*Latest information as of 5:30 p.m. (Please note status changes for McNeese and Nicholls.)
BATON ROUGE – The eight University of Louisiana System campuses are vigilantly monitoring Hurricane Gustav. All have activated their campus emergency action teams. The four South Louisiana universities are making appropriate arrangements to secure the safety of their campus faculty, staff, and students, if necessary, and the four North Louisiana universities are preparing to support and assist, as needed.
“Over the past year, our System universities have been collaborating to improve emergency preparedness efforts. I commend our campus presidents and their staffs for their planning and preparation, as well as their willingness to offer assistance,” said UL System President Randy Moffett.
The following are special contact information and the latest status updates by university:
GRAMBLING STATE UNIVERSITY, Grambling, Louisiana
The university is monitoring the storm.
LOUSIANA TECH UNIVERSITY, Ruston, Louisiana
Louisiana Tech’s Storm Information Center has been activated in response to Hurricane Gustav and the pending evacuations. The university is expecting students from Nicholls State University to arrive late tonight, are coordinating with the local community to find shelters for the families of Tech students should they need to evacuate to the area, and are also in the process of receiving medical equipment/supplies shipments for the special needs patients that will be housed in Memorial Gym. Those patients and the medical staff should begin arriving on Sunday. At this time, no changes have been made to academic or athletics schedules.
MCNEESE STATE UNIVERSITY, Lake Charles, Louisiana
The McNeese State University campus will be closed at 6 p.m. Sunday and will remain closed to all non-essential, emergency personnel until an all clear is given. Streets to the campus are barricaded and university police are patrolling the campus during the closure. No shelters will be available on the McNeese campus. Students and employees with limited transportation should report to the McNeese Police building at 8 a.m. Sunday to participate in the public evacuation. Calcasieu Parish will provide buses to public shelters outside the danger zone. A mandatory evacuation of the residence halls began late Saturday morning. Computing technology services and several other essential personnel will relocate to Louisiana Tech and resume operations there. On Monday, McNeese employees and students should expect e-mail, Blackboard and Banner to be offline for six or more hours. The McNeese Web page will not be affected and updates will be posted there as they are available. During the mandatory campus closure, only emergency personnel, including university police, will remain on campus. The status of the campus will be re-evaluated after Hurricane Gustav passes and the area is deemed safe. The university will be closed at least through Wednesday and employees and students will be notified of re-opening information through e-mail, the Web page and local media.
NICHOLLS STATE UNIVERSITY, Thibodaux, Louisiana
1-866-709-8927; www.nicholls.edu; http://emergency.nicholls.edu
Nicholls State University is officially closed and the streets surrounding campus have been barricaded. University faculty, staff and students are advised to evacuate to an area out of the storm’s path. On-campus residents as well as university faculty and staff without a means of transportation started evacuation to Louisiana Tech University at 2 p.m. today where they will receive pre-arranged shelter and meals for the duration of their stay. Only emergency personnel, including university police, will remain on campus. Classes are canceled until 7:30 a.m., Wednesday, Sept. 3. There will be no open shelter on campus.
NORTHWESTERN STATE UNIVERSITY, Natchitoches, Louisiana
318-357-5431 (University Police); www.nsula.edu/hurricane.asp
NSU’s Health and Human Performance Building is being prepared as an emergency evacuation shelter by the American Red Cross. The facility has served as a shelter for evacuees from Katrina, Rita and other storms in recent years. Depending on the track of Gustav, students from McNeese State University in Lake Charles, the University of New Orleans and other South Louisiana schools could be housed in a vacant dormitory at Northwestern that is being prepared as a possible shelter for students. Efforts are also being made to accommodate emergency response personnel from utility companies in Louisiana and other states who will be dealing with possible power outages in the region.
SOUTHEASTERN LOUISIANA UNIVERSITY, Hammond, Louisiana
www.selu.edu ; KSLU 90.9 FM
Southeastern Louisiana University will cancel classes and events and close its main campus and off-site locations on Tuesday, Sept. 2. Southeastern will also close the Pennington Student Activity Center over the weekend for hurricane preparations. Based on current information, normal operations and classes expected to resume on Wednesday, Sept. 3. While the campus is closed, only previously identified essential emergency support personnel will be allowed on campus. The university does not operate a “public” shelter. In the event of a campus closure, only students who live on campus and are unable to return home, e.g., international students, will be housed at the University Center.
UNIVERSITY OF LOUISIANA AT LAFAYETTE, Lafayette, Louisiana
The University of Louisiana at Lafayette will be closed on Tuesday, September 2, 2008 due to the threat of Hurricane Gustav. The decision was made early to allow students, faculty and staff an opportunity to make their preparations and be with their families for the storm. Residence halls are fully staffed and secured for any students who currently live on campus and choose to remain on campus.
ULM opened Fant-Ewing Coliseum as a Special Needs Shelter operated by the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals, Louisiana Social Services, and ULM’s Nursing and Pharmacy faculty, staff, and students. Residence halls are at full capacity and cannot hold additional people. ULM is directing families of students, faculty, and staff to local shelters.
Status changes and decisions on class and campus closures may continue to be made over the weekend. Please utilize the specific university websites and phone numbers for the latest up-to-date information.