N.C. Central offering emergency management workshop this fall
N.C. Central University is partnering with the Federal Emergency Management Agency this September to help North Carolina businesses, campuses and local government agencies prepare for disasters.
NCCU is the first historically black college or university to host this “train the trainer” workshop with FEMA’s Continuity of Operations Division.
The three-day workshop will help organizations hone their continuity planning skills, which is essentially creating a back-up plan for their operations when a natural or manmade disaster strikes.
That can range from chemical spills and hurricanes to business fires or flooding.
Chris Herring, director of NCCU’s Institute for Homeland Security and Workforce Development, said two certified FEMA instructors will visit and help lead the workshop.
Herring said NCCU had to apply to be a workshop site, and he said he thinks they were picked due to their relationship with FEMA’s Emergency Management Institute, a training facility in Maryland, as well as NCCU’s similar course offerings such as mobilizing faith-based groups during disasters.
Groups that have already signed up to take the workshop are Livingstone College in Salisbury, Fayetteville State University, NCCU, Durham County Emergency Management and the Durham VA Medical Center.
Herring said the NCCU institute also is pinpointing Durham Technical Community College and businesses within Research Triangle Park as potential attendees.
“This course will help strengthen the resiliency or allow the community to bounce back quicker because the organizations will have plans already in place,” Herring said.
David Marsee with Durham County Emergency Management said they are sometimes asked to help Durham businesses review their continuity of operations plans.
Disasters can strike at any time, Marsee said, such as the 2002 ice storm or Hurricane Fran in 1996.
But “one of the things a business can look at, it may not be a natural disaster but it may be a fire,” he said. “…They can happen tomorrow.”
The workshop will be held September 10 - 12 at the Whiting Criminal Justice Building on NCCU campus. Register for the workshop at www.nccu.edu/academics/institutesandcenters/hls/.