Ohio universities open doors to students

atalie Pillsbury

Ohio universities responded to Hurricane Katrina’s devastation by opening their doors to displaced students.

Youngstown State, Ohio State and Kent State have offered free tuition to students who are attending college in the area affected by the hurricane.

“Obviously, we’re doing what we can to assist in regard to tuition,” said Greg Jarvie, dean of students and student ombudsman at Kent State.

Students displaced by the hurricane who are transferring to Kent State are mostly Ohio residents who were attending college in the South, Jarvie said.

Displaced students are being provided with student or local housing.

“The students come to an academic adviser, build a reasonable schedule, and we assess how feasible it is for them to be successful,” Jarvie said.

Kent State is also suspending enrollment deadlines for Ohio residents who were enrolled in Gulf Coast schools.

Along with offering free tuition, Ohio State is providing a modified application process and a special orientation with counselors available.

Youngstown State is offering the same benefits, with free housing where it is available.

Case Western Reserve is another Ohio university taking in students following the devastation of southern universities.

“Right now we’re mostly accepting Tulane students, but we’re working on a case-by-case basis,” said Laura Massie, senior news and information specialist at Case Western Reserve. “The Case community is very concerned about everyone who’s been displaced.”

Case Western Reserve has a special relationship with Tulane in New Orleans because the president of Tulane used to be one of Case’s deans, Massie said.

Tulane President Scott Cowen used to be a dean at Case’s Weatherhead School of Management.

Tulane students are offered a 50 percent tuition discount at Case Western Reserve, discounted housing and other assistance.

Accepting displaced students is just a part of what Case Western Reserve is doing to aid the area affected by the hurricane, Massie said.

Case Western Reserve has donated more than 400 pieces of residence hall furniture to universities affected by Katrina, and there is a drive scheduled to raise money at the first home football game, Massie said.

Faculty, graduate students and researchers from the area affected by the hurricane are also being integrated into the Case campus and community.

“Everybody on the Case staff has opened their doors for people who need a place to stay,” Massie said.

Contact general assignment reporter Natalie Pillsbury at [email protected].