SEATTLE, Wash. -- The University of Washington is one of five universities selected to participate in a FEMA pilot program designed to help the nation's colleges and universities mitigate future property loss and economic damage from natural disasters. According to Tammy Doherty, acting regional director for FEMA Region 10 (a jurisdiction including Alaska, Oregon, Idaho and Washington), the pilot program uses the same strategic approach as FEMA's highly successful Project Impact: Building Disaster Resistant Communities initiative.
"Each pilot Disaster Resistant University will match a $100,000 FEMA grant to develop and implement sustainable, long-term mitigation projects," said Doherty. "By protecting themselves, their employees and their students, universities create a mitigation umbrella that can profoundly affect surrounding communities."
UW Assistant Vice President Sandra Lier agrees. "The University of Washington has been a Project Impact partner since 1997, when we joined with the City of SEATTLE, Wash. as one of the first seven pilot Project Impact communities in the nation," said Lier. "We've already initiated a structural mitigation program and are retrofitting our older buildings. Our selection as one of the first five Disaster Resistant Universities will allow us to incorporate a multi-hazard approach into our existing seismic risk reduction activities, update our hazards and vulnerabilities assessments, and adopt a long term strategic loss reduction plan."
Also selected to participate in the new pilot program are: Tulane University, University of Alaska Fairbanks, University of Miami, and the University of North Carolina.