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PRESS RELEASE: State University System holds summit on campus resiliency

GAINESVILLE — More than 100 academic, administrative, and student affairs leaders from the 12 state universities gathered in Gainesville last week at a summit to examine the impact of a major campus emergency on a university’s educational delivery system. Sponsored by the Board of Governors and the University of Florida, the SUMMIT on Academic Continuity and Campus Resiliency was designed to make sure universities are as ready as possible to address major emergencies in their campus communities, including hurricanes or major storms, major explosion/fires, public health emergencies, or terrorist threats and acts of violence.

“This Summit is a part of a larger process for ensuring student safety while also making sure that universities are prepared to maintain their academic mission – even in the face of a major disruption,” said Marshall Criser, State University System Chancellor. “Universities should also be prepared to provide prompt support to a sister institution when a major emergency arises.”

One session, led by Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM) Deputy Director Kevin Guthrie, updated university leaders on the Division’s renewed focus on outreach as well as its efforts to serve as a more effective conduit to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in times of emergency. He also reviewed new FDEM and FEMA procedures designed to improve the responsiveness to state requests for assistance.

Sessions topics also included emergency management, information technology, online learning, student needs, faculty needs, as well as external partnerships. University leaders led many of the sessions, providing lessons learned from their own experiences.

Facts about the State University System of Florida and the Board of Governors

The State University System of Florida is a constitutional body led by the 17-member Board of Governors. The system has 12 universities and more than 345,000 students, making it the second-largest public university system in the nation. Responsibilities include defining the distinctive mission of each institution and managing the system’s coordination and operation. The Board appoints a Chancellor who serves as the system’s chief executive. For more, visit,,or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.