In the early weeks of September, Hurricane Ida hit Drew University, resulting in basement flooding of dormitories and academic buildings, as well as posing a nuisance for commuter students trying to get to their classes the following morning. Although Ida’s initial impact was as a Category 4 hurricane, it was classified as a tropical storm upon making landfall in New Jersey.
President Schwarz sent out an email the morning following the storm to update the Drew community. “Minor roof leaks and basement flooding in several buildings and rooms have been identified, and we are working to resolve those issues,” wrote Schwarz. He also assured students that facilities would be attending to these damages immediately.
According to Director of Facilities Stephanie McCormick, “There were a few roof leaks and some water infiltration in the lower levels of some buildings due to the sheer volume of the rain but no tree loss or structural damage to any buildings.”
Given the increased rainfall, Drew Facilities have been checking gutters and inspecting roofs more frequently. “We also do regular inspections and maintenance on the storm water system on campus and provide additional sump pumps where needed if excessive rain is predicted,” said McCormick.
The university ultimately decided not to cancel class for students due to storm damages, however, flooding and public transportation delays prevented some commuter students from attending. Campus Life made themselves available to help any students struggling to travel to class and professors did not penalize students for absences related to the natural disaster.
Drew suggested students experiencing issues getting to class to contact Campus Life for accomodations. President Schwarz reported that minor roof leaks and basement flooding in several buildings have been resolved. Additionally, Stephanie McCormick, Director of Facilities, discussed that facilities are working diligently to inspect the gutters and roofs more frequently to prevent this from reoccurring in the future.