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Lafayette President Dan Weiss issued the following statement today:

Members of the Lafayette community join with others across the nation in mourning the victims of Hurricane Katrina and extending deepest sympathy to those who are suffering in the wake of the disaster.

The College has mobilized to lend assistance in the crisis. To respond to immediate needs, current efforts are focused on education and communication within the Lafayette family, fundraising, and serving students enrolled at colleges in the devastated region.

Next Tuesday, Sept. 6, an open forum will be held at 4:15 p.m. in the Marlo Room of Farinon College Center to give the campus community greater insight into the hurricane’s tragic effects and to launch a coordinated, campus-wide fundraising initiative to support the efforts of humanitarian groups providing for those affected by the disaster.

A second event next week, to be held in the evening, will further raise awareness of the devastation and ways to help. Speakers from a variety of community sectors and agencies will be invited to share their observations and perspectives. The date, time, and location will be announced as soon as they are determined.

Amber Zuber (x5653), coordinator of the Landis Community Outreach Center, and representatives of student organizations and administrative offices are collaborating on both of these events.

The College is also working to respond to the needs of students enrolled at institutions in the devastated area. Carol Rowlands (x5100), director of admissions, is leading an assessment of how Lafayette may provide access to those whose education has been disrupted.

Updates on these initiatives will follow in due course. A working group representing all sectors of the campus community will continue exploring additional, new initiatives to help in the intermediate and long term.

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