September 16, 2010
For Immediate Release
For additional information:
Barbara Kerr, APR
Executive Director of
Communications and Marketing
Clark Safety Efforts Earn Federal Support
Clark College has received a grant of nearly $750,000
in support of the college’s emergency management efforts
VANCOUVER, Wash. – In support of its efforts to provide a safe college environment, Clark College has received a federal grant of nearly $750,000. The grant, which runs from October 1, 2010 through September 30, 2012, is provided through the national Emergency Management for Higher Education Program of the U.S. Department of Education.
The $744,402 grant reflected the full amount of the request submitted by Clark College Director of Operations & Auxiliary Services Jennifer Grove.
Grove said “The Emergency Management Planning Committee and the Behavioral Intervention Team are deeply invested in the safety of our students, faculty and staff. This award honors their work and lays the foundation for critical growth in emergency management at the college.” Grove thanked Clark’s Director of Grants Development Shelley Das and the staff of the college’s Office of Planning and Effectiveness for their role in supporting the grant.
She also noted that the college’s partnership agreements with the City of Vancouver, Clark Regional Emergency Services Agency, the Vancouver Police Department and Clark County Public Health – all of which were cited in the grant application – will play “a vital role in the work we do going forward.”
Clark College President Robert K. Knight said, “It’s gratifying to know that the tireless efforts by our faculty, staff and administrators to ensure that our college is a safe environment have been recognized at a national level.”
He added, “This week, we’ve had two examples -- this federal grant and a $1.1 million donation for our Early Learning Center – that remind us how important external funding is today in supporting student success and fulfilling our mission.”
Clark College Emergency Management Planning
In April 2007, the college formed a Security Assessment Task Force. That first step launched comprehensive emergency management planning efforts across the college. They have included building mapping for emergency responders, new locks on college doors, enhanced lighting on Clark’s main campus, additional Automatic External Defibrillators (AEDs) across the college, the creation of a Behavioral Intervention Team, and the establishment of an Emergency Management Planning Committee responsible for the creation and implementation of a NIMS (National Incident Management System) compliant plan for the college.
About the Emergency Management for Higher Education Program
According to the grant notification, the program provides “grants to institutions of higher education to review, improve and institutionalize their emergency management planning efforts within the framework of the four phases of emergency management, including reviewing and enhancing current plan(s); training university staff and faculty in emergency management procedures; ensuring coordination of planning and communication across departments within the institution; collaborating with local and/or State government and emergency management efforts; developing a written plan that incorporates medical, communication, and transportation needs of those with disabilities and special needs into emergency protocols; and, developing a written plan that prepares the IHE for a possible infectious disease outbreak, such as pandemic influenza.”
What does this mean for Clark College?
The EMHE (Emergency Management for Higher Education) grant will be supported extensively by local first responder agencies and city government. The project will achieve full National Incident Management System (NIMS) compliance as the college completes and implements a comprehensive emergency operations plan. Objectives also include continuity of operations planning, including addressing the college’s extensive information technology infrastructure to withstand potential crises. The EMHE project will provide for the inclusion of special needs groups, advanced behavioral threat assessment training, college-wide training that will be available through social networks and on the college website, as well as training sessions and drills at Clark’s main campus and its facilities at Columbia Tech Center, Town Plaza and WSU Vancouver.