As a senior undergraduate student, the last thing I expected to happen during my remaining time in school was a major hurricane. Being a local, born and raised here in Wilmington, hurricanes and tropical storms never really had an impact in my life. I never worried about any of the storms that had come our way in the past. When most people in Wilmington hear about the potential for these kind of weather events, they immediately start planning hurricane parties. With Florence, there was no reason to celebrate.
With a month off from classes, everyone has had an interesting time adjusting to the new reality of an even tighter knit fall semester. Schedule changes, make up assignments, and the lack of proper classrooms and housing for some has made this semester one for the books. Despite all of the negative aspects of the disaster being mentioned, there’s plenty of positivity flowing throughout our campus community. Student led organizations and benefits have helped to bring us together more than ever. Efforts like We Wilm Rebuild have raised money and gathered supplies for various members of our community who were affected by the hurricane.
As students taking steps to enter the professional world, learning how to brand ourselves is crucial to our success. Our university community (UNCW) has taken steps to brand ourselves as a consistent entity that is focused on the safety and dedication for one another. Timely hurricane updates, which were clear and concise, helped comfort not only myself, but others in a time where all we wanted to know was if our school was okay. The idea that we should be supportive and accommodating to anyone in this time of need proves that our university cares about all of our students and our faculty and staff. For students with damaged dorms, UNCW has been able to help by providing alternate locations for students to live in. By going through plenty of hoops, our university has taken steps to make sure that as students we continue to get the educational experience that we signed up for. Even through tough times, our love and dedication as Seahawks shines on.
~ Logan Matthews