Contact: Allison Matthews
STARKVILLE, Miss.—Mississippi State is supporting students from areas impacted by Hurricane Michael and urging them to make safety their top priority – especially regarding travel decisions during the university’s upcoming fall break Thursday and Friday [Oct. 11-12].
To accommodate students who will stay on campus, MSU Dining will continue operations through the holiday. The Marketplace at Perry will be open Thursday, Friday and Saturday [Oct. 11-13], and Fresh Food will be open Sunday [Oct. 14]. The food court in MSU’s Colvard Student Union also will be open Thursday and Friday, with the Union’s Subway and Panda Express remaining open Saturday. For hours of operation, visit https://www.msstate.edu/files/fall-break-hours-2018jpg. All retail dining will return to normal operations on Sunday.
MSU residence halls do not close during fall break, so students who live on campus will have full access to their residential spaces. The Sanderson Center also will remain open and operational during the break. For hours of operation, visit https://www.urec.msstate.edu/.
The university has identified just over 500 students who are residents of Florida, which is experiencing the brunt of the ensuing storm. University leaders also are encouraging students from additional areas impacted by this storm to use an abundance of caution and consider staying on campus through the weekend.
“We strongly encourage students to stay here and not attempt to go into the areas that will potentially be affected by the hurricane,” said MSU Dean of Students Thomas Bourgeois. He emphasized that the university works with students facing a sudden crisis and helps impacted students through difficult times.
“When a natural disaster like Hurricane Michael strikes, there will be a number of MSU students who have family members and homes impacted, which can lead to a variety of difficulties. Some of these students will need an extra helping hand, and we are here to help them,” Bourgeois added.
While MSU classes remain in session throughout Wednesday [Oct. 10], faculty and instructors have been asked to provide academic accommodation to those students that live along the Florida Gulf Coast and neighboring states and who request an excused absence to travel home in advance of the storm. It is strongly recommended that students who live in the Gulf Coast region monitor the area weather channels and heed evacuation orders.
MSU stands ready to assist in the wake of Hurricane Michael if needed. The Mississippi State University Extension Service and the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station include emergency response professionals who will work in the areas of human services, health, volunteer response, family and consumer sciences, agriculture and natural resources, as well as animal health. MSU Extension and MAFES representatives follow the state’s Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan.
“If and when a county requests assistance through a local county emergency manager, MSU will deploy appropriate resources,” said MSU Extension Service Director Gary Jackson.
MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at www.msstate.edu.