|Q: How has the Elliott shutdown affected the proceedings of student board members?
A: I haven’t been affected by the closing of Elliot Hall too much yet. The biggest inconvenience has been for professors who lost research, had books destroyed by the flooding and have had to relocate to a small location in the Stewart Annex. As a senior, I am sad I cannot go visit my professors in their own offices, but do not have any classes in the building this semester so I have not had to rearrange my schedule at all. The P &G Student Board has not planned any events yet for this semester, so we will just have to find another building for the events when the time comes.
|Q: What was the Public Safety office like the night the flood occurred?
A: Officer Andy Roy was the first officer to discover the flood. He was working a basketball game and was leaving the game when he heard the outside alarm bell. If not for Andy’s keen sense of awareness, the damage would have possibly gone unaware for several more hours. The response from Lt. Cathy Hursey demands recognition also. Chris Hinshaw (from B&G), Cathy and Andy ran into a building that was flooding, not knowing if the ceiling might collapse or the possibility of electrical problems, they braved ankle deep water in the basement and a soaking downpour.
|Q: What are some of the specific difficulties you’ve had to face due to Elliott closing?
A: Back-breaking packing and moving boxes. A loss of lecture notes for classes I’m teaching this semester. But since I rarely do lectures any more, losing my security blanket isn’t too big a loss.
Q: How do you feel OWU has handled the situation?
A: Beautifully! People all over campus have been incredibly kind and caring. The president wrote a very empathetic letter to all of us, the dean and provost worked days to find us accommodations and have reached out to us individually and campus police helped establish order but were flexible with our needs. We owe a large debt of gratitude to the Buildings and Grounds people who must have filled dozens of dump trucks with discarded books and file contents.
Q: Did you have to deal with losses or destruction of personal items or important documents?
A: I think the universe designed this to help me downsize. I’ve been at OWU for almost 30 years and had way too much stuff. So, that’s the silver lining in my having the office directly below where the sprinkler system broke. My slides from around the world can be remounted and finally digitized, I can buy another large picture book of “The Hobbit” I’ve been saving to read to my grandchildren, and I can email Paul Farmer, who sent me a signed copy of his latest book out of the blue and simply ask for another.
Q: In what ways has OWU helped, or not, with relocating your office and classes to alternative buildings?
A: I love being in Stewart Annex! It suits my 1960’s ideals for communal living. Besides, two of my closest friends, Connie Richards and Corinne Lyman, have their offices in the Annex. Pam Laucher and Kathy Frissora — they were ahead of us in anticipating needs for the move. They kept us appraised of decisions being made about access to Elliott and they have since made the Annex comfortable and homelike.
|Q: How was your office affected by the flooding?
A: My office was pretty much untouched for the most part; actually it was totally untouched. Because I’m new here, I hadn’t really settled into my office and I didn’t have much in my office anyway. One, I didn’t lose anything, and two, I didn’t have much to pack up. All of my office fit into three boxes, I probably had the least of anybody in the entire building, I felt very lucky.
Q: What is the biggest difficulty of being relocated to the Stewart Annex?
A: Definitely the only, greatest difficulty for me has been meeting with students. That’s the main thing. We don’t have any personal space (in the Stewart Annex) and we need to give students that when we talk about personal, academic things. We have about three real rooms that are available, and although it’s not too frequent, they do get taken by other professors to talk to their students leaving you without a space to take yours. There was one time so far that all of the free spaces were occupied and there were no places to talk to students.
Q: How has this affected others in the Stewart Annex?
A: I know that we have a couple of student workers and it’s been difficult for us to find suitable spaces for them here, and I think a lot of faculty has difficulty getting work done. Some of us have had to scale back our office hours just because there isn’t enough room here to meet with students.
Q: What would you say is the most emotionally trying element of the Elliott flooding?
A: The worst part of it all is the amount of personal objects that were lost by faculty during the flooding and how much meaning were in those things. Like with Mary Howard’s lost rocking chair that she breastfed in — when you have experiences like that with certain objects and we lose them, those things are no longer just objects.
Q: Are there any positives about relocating to the Stewart Annex?
A: I guess as a bright spot, my colleagues and I have been joking around a lot and it kind of feels like we are in graduate school again.
|Q: Several of the parking space in the lot at 4 Williams Drive were changed from “B” spots used by students into “A” spots in order to accommodate the communications employees that were relocated to 4 Williams Dr. How has that inconvenience you or your friends?
A: The parking situation is unfortunate. However, when the issue occurred I immediately called Public Safety to ask if they would only be ticketing during normal business hours. Luckily, I never need the B spots during the day. However, I do feel sorry for those students who live at 4 Williams and the times are inconvenient to them. What I will say is that there are absolutely no lights near 4 Williams parking lot and it is scary when you are alone. Other students feel exactly the same about our parking lot.