GU Muslims University Works To Support Students

By Meredith McCloskey Hoya Staff Writer

Charles Nailen/The Hoya Marines sitting on a nearby hill watch the plume of smoke rise from the Pentagon.

The university emergency response team has been meeting periodically since Tuesday morning to ensure “the safety and security of campus and the students,” university officials said.

After considering information from the federal government and other authorities, the group decided to cancel classes held after noon Tuesday. At this time the decision to resume normal class schedule on Wednesday was also made. The group believed “it was an opportunity for a forum to address [students’ problems] in a supportive environment,” said Julie Green Bataille, Assistant Vice President for Communications.

While other universities in the area remained closed Wednesday, University President John J. DeGioia felt it was best to “move forward to continue addressing one another’s needs,” he wrote in an E-mail sent Tuesday to the university community.

Although classes were cancelled, the university remained open, with Yates open until 2 a.m. and Lauinger Library operating at regular hours, ensuring that services were available to students around campus.

Darnall cafeteria, however, temporarily closed so that an adequate staff was available for New South to continue serving meals. The MSB Tech Center also closed on Tuesday. According to Green Bataille, many staff members had family responsibilities and accommodations were made.

Classes scheduled after 11:50 a.m. today will be canceled as well in response to President Bush’s declaration of a National Day of Prayer and Remembrance.

In addition, the “Children’s Environmental Health II: A Global Forum for Action” concluded early Tuesday, without the arrival of keynote speaker, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) or Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency Christine Todd Whitman. On the last day of the six-day event, the Marriott Conference Center was booked, according to a forum official.

“We’ve seen the worst of humanity. We can still work together to build a better place for humanity,” he said.

Because of the presence of several Canadian elected officials, the area was protected by hotel security. Three physicians were brought in by forum officials to support the people in the room, advising them to stay because it was unknown “if the last of the explosions [had] gone off,” the forum official reported. They were also directed not to use landlines, cell phones or pagers and encouraged not to go out on the streets.

On Wednesday, it was also announced that all social activities of Senior Disorientation would be postponed until further notice.

“Everything is postponed, not canceled,” Senior Class Committee Chair Aaron Polkey (COL ’02) said during a meeting held Wednesday night to plan the rest of the week. “Talking to people around campus, it seemed inappropriate to gather socially, for anyone to drink or dance . It just didn’t seem right to get in a toga and go to Leavey Esplanade Saturday night,” Polkey said.

Due to the cancellation of all Major League Baseball games through the weekend, the trip to the Baltimore Orioles game today is also postponed. The senior class committee plans to attend the make up game. Refund requests can be made at the Senior Class Committee table at SAC Fair Saturday, and will be processed on onday. There may be an opportunity to repurchase tickets to the make-up game, with priority going to those seniors on the original waiting list.

When appropriate, Polkey said he would like to completely replicate the original schedule, starting where Senior Disorientation left off, on a Wednesday night.

Discussing ways to bring students together and provide support outside campus, Polkey urged students to attend Saturday’s Oasis community service trip.

“We want to push the senior class. Here’s an opportunity to do something. We have more free time because we’re not doing what we were going to do. This is something the [senior] class needs to do together,” he said.

According to Polkey, many seniors responded to the cancellation positively, asking for a continuation, but one devoted to helping the community cope with the tragedy.

Polkey also mentioned reaching out to local public schools who do not have the resources or time to have visiting counselors talk to the students. This, as well as other ideas, will be further discussed during the upcoming week.

Tuesday’s open house at the MBNA Career Center was also postponed until further notice, and the resume drop extended until Sept. 27.

According to Associate Director Jim Dixey, the career center has taken a proactive role in communicating with companies, especially those with offices in or near the World Trade Center, planning visits to campus this fall. The career center has set up a small group to deal with aiding these companies, such as J.P. Morgan, with their advertising on campus and to work with them to get their message to students that they plan to maintain their commitment to Georgetown and to reassure them that they will reschedule. Deutsche Bank has also confirmed that they still plan on holding recruiting events, Dixey said.

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