Lynn officials notified of death of Journey of Hope student Britney Gengel, all Lynn students and professors accounted for

Lynn University officials have confirmed that the U.S. Department of State has notified the family of the passing of Britney Gengel. Britney was a sophomore from Rutland, Mass.

Fourteen members of the Lynn community were in Haiti on a "Journey of Hope" service trip when a magnitude 7.0 earthquake struck the island on Jan. 12. The remains of all six (6) members of the group missing in Haiti have now been recovered. Eight (8) members of that group were evacuated from the country and returned to campus on Jan. 14.

No additional information is available at this hour. University officials will not offer additional comment. Any breaking news will be shared exclusively on this site.



President Kevin M. Ross offers reaction

Lynn University President Kevin M. Ross has issued the following statement (below) in reaction to today's news. This will be the only public statement offered at this time.

"While at Lynn, Britney triumphed academically and socially and was a true inspiration to the Lynn community and the community at large. She was a beautiful young woman who gave her life serving others. We will miss her terribly. Our thoughts and prayers are with Cherylann, Len, Bernie, Richie and the rest of the Gengel family, as well as Britney's friends and loved ones during this difficult time."

Message from Len, Cherylann Gengel and their son Richie
Our Valentine, Britney Gengel was recovered by Col. Norberto Cintron and identified by the State Department today. Even though our hearts our breaking, we are so grateful to the men and women who have worked at the Hotel Montana for the past 33 days. Their efforts continue for the remaining two Americans still missing in the rubble at the Hotel Montana. We are praying for the families that their loved ones are brought home.

A heartfelt thank you to Bill Hawkins, chief of the Army Corps of Engineers, Bob Zoldos, chief of Fairfax S&R Team, Michelle Bernier-Toth of the State Department and Col. Norberto Cintron of the U.S. Army who kept their promises to bring our baby home. God bless them and their families.

The success of the recovery effort at the Hotel Montana would not have been possible without the help of Sen. John Kerry and his aide Drew O'Brien. Kerry was the first U.S. government official to contact us in Florida during this catastrophe. We also want to thank U.S. Congressman Jim McGovern and his aide Chris Phillbin. McGovern had the courage to accompany the Lynn University families to Haiti and witness firsthand the sight and smell of Hell on earth. Additionally, Sen. Scott Brown and his aide Steven Schrage were not afraid to get involved with this tragedy and to help us with the State Department issues. Special thanks to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her Chief of Staff, Cheryl Mills, who coordinated the Lynn University family trip to the Hotel Montana in Haiti.

Because of her efforts, the families were able to see firsthand the compassion, conviction and commitment of all the workers at the Hotel Montana site. This gave all the Lynn families peace of mind and comfort, seeing with their own eyes all the efforts that our government was making in the search and rescue mission. To Sen. Steve Brewer who came in our door the first night of the earthquake and has been a constant support through this horrific ordeal. Then Lew Evangelidis stepped up and got the new Sen. Scott Brown involved with our recovery efforts.

Our daughter Britney signed up for a 3-week course at Lynn University called Journey of Hope.  We sat with her before she left and talked about this trip being a life-changing event. We never knew that this trip would change our lives and hers forever. We want to thank Lynn University for all their efforts during such an incredibly difficult time. A special thanks to Dr. Phil Riordan who never once forgot to hug us when we saw him each day and Dr. Cynthia Patterson who always watched over Brit while she was attending Lynn University. Lastly, we appreciate Dr. Kevin Ross for not caving in under the pressure of this catastrophe and leading the efforts of his team on the ground in Haiti and at Lynn University. We are grateful to everyone at Lynn University who went out of their way to make us feel loved.

Finally we would like to thank our family for their constant love and support, while never leaving our side for one minute during this tragedy. We are blessed with true friends who have felt our pain and suffering and have supported us through this most difficult time in our lives. We are thankful to our community who have shown their support with kind words, prayers and yellow ribbons for our Britney's return home. Lastly, we are grateful to all the other wonderful, compassionate people in this great land of ours called the United States of America who have sent their thoughts, prayers and love to us on a daily basis, we say God bless.

We have our faith, hope and love. Faith in God, hope that someday we will be with Britney for an eternity in heaven and love of family, friends, community and country. We will now wait for our Britney to come home to us so that we can celebrate her life and we can continue her Journey of Hope for the poorest of the poor in Haiti.

God bless all of you and God bless Britney!
Len and Cherylann Gengel and their son Richie

MEDIA NOTES:

Campus memorial to be held at Lynn in the future

An on-campus ceremony celebrating the lives and accomplishments of all of the Journey of Hope participants will be held in the future. However, no such ceremony has been scheduled at this time.

Lynn University's alert site updates from Jan. 12-Jan. 27 have been archived on the Lynn.edu news page as a service to the news media.

Lynn officials notified of death of Journey of Hope professor, Dr. Richard Bruno

Lynn University officials have confirmed that the U.S. Department of State has notified the family of the passing of Dr. Richard Bruno. Bruno was an assistant professor in Lynn's College of Liberal Education. He joined the university four years ago.

Of the 14 members of the Lynn community who were in Haiti on a "Journey of Hope" service trip, one student remains unaccounted for.



The Bruno family has requested privacy at this time and will not be taking or returning calls for comment. The university asks that members of the media please honor that request.




No additional information is available at this hour. Any breaking news will be shared exclusively on this site.

Vice President for Academic Affairs Cynthia Patterson offers reaction

Cynthia Patterson, Lynn University's vice president for academic affairs, has issued the following statement (below) in reaction to today's news. This will be the only public statement offered at this time.


"With compassion, care and a deep commitment to helping others, Dr. Bruno became one of Lynn's most respected and effective professors. Able to impart his love of learning to his students, Dr. Bruno challenged each and every student to discover their potential and pursue their goals and personal aspirations. Beyond his considerable contributions to students' academic achievements, Dr. Bruno's greatest contributions to the Lynn community lie in his leadership as an advocate for human dignity, social justice and international cooperation. The consummate global citizen, Dr. Bruno committed his life professionally and personally to the service of others and to promoting a more just, equitable, and peaceful world. We will miss him terribly."

MEDIA NOTES:

Lynn University's alert site updates from Jan. 12-Jan. 27 have been archived on the Lynn.edu news page as a service to the news media.

Lynn officials notified of death of Journey of Hope student Stephanie Crispinelli and Education Dean Patrick Hartwick

Lynn University officials have learned that the U.S. Department of State has notified the family of the passing of Stephanie Crispinelli, a sophomore from Katonah, N.Y. The family of Dr. Patrick Hartwick, Dean of the Ross College of Education, were also notified of the death of Dr. Hartwick today.

Of the 14 members of the Lynn community who were in Haiti on a "Journey of Hope" service trip, one student and one faculty member remain unaccounted for.

The Crispinelli and Hartwick families have requested privacy at this time and will not be taking or returning calls for comment. The university asks that members of the media please honor that request.

No additional information is available at this hour. Any breaking news will be shared exclusively on the Lynn alert site (www.lynn.edu/alert).

President Kevin M. Ross and Vice President for Academic Affairs Cynthia Patterson offer press statements
Lynn University President Kevin M. Ross and Vice President for Academic Affairs Cynthia Patterson have issued the following statements (below) in reaction to today's news. These will be the only public statements offered at this time.

President Kevin M. Ross:
"I am deeply saddened to learn about the loss of Stephanie. She had a real passion for serving others. Upon returning home from the Journey for Hope trip in Jamaica in January 2009, she began collecting sneakers and sports equipment to send back to the island--this after meeting orphans there who played soccer without shoes or equipment. This was the type of young lady she was--one who sought out need and then, when she found it, tried to remedy it. We are so proud to have known her. Our thoughts and prayers are with Lin, Lenny, Nicholas, Mike and all of Stephanie's friends and loved ones during this difficult time."

Vice President for Academic Affairs Cynthia Patterson:
"As a colleague and educator, Dr. Hartwick garnered the respect of faculty and students for his uncompromising commitment to making a difference in the lives of students and educational institutions. An advocate for excellence in education, Dr. Hartwick dedicated his considerable talents to ensuring that every student had the opportunity to reach their potential as students and citizens. He believed in the power of education to eradicate ignorance and promote justice and his life's work is clearly a testimony to his professional and personal commitments. He was a dear friend and I will miss him terribly."

MEDIA NOTES:
Campus memorial to be held at Lynn in the future
An on-campus ceremony celebrating the lives and accomplishments of all of the Journey of Hope participants will be held in the future. However, no such ceremony has been scheduled at this time.

Families, classmates of missing Journey of Hope students and faculty ask for privacy
Family members of the Journey of Hope students and faculty are asking the media to please respect their privacy at this time. The eight students who returned from Haiti on Jan. 14, as well as the families of the four other students and two faculty members, have been inundated with requests for comments, and are also being routinely asked to verify news reports. The families listed below have explicitly requested that they no longer be subjected to these demands.

Should the families listed below wish to issue a statement, they will do so only via the Lynn alert site (www.lynn.edu/alert) and alert media list (of which you are a member).

Our Journey of Hope families, and the Lynn University community as a whole, are appreciative of the work performed by the members of the media throughout this crisis and understanding of the job they continue to try to do. However, given the circumstances, the families are again appealing for privacy. Thank you.  

Signed by:
The Family of Christine Gianacaci
The Family of Stephanie Crispinelli
The Family of Richard Bruno, M.D.
The Family of Dr. Patrick Hartwick
Thomas Schloemer
Nikki Fantauzzi
Daniel Montealegre
Julie Prudhomme
Michael DeMatteo
Melissa Elliot
Lindsay Doran
Paul Tyska

Lynn University's alert site updates from Jan. 12-Jan. 27 have been archived on the Lynn.edu news page as a service to the news media.

Lynn officials notified of death of Journey of Hope student Christine Gianacaci

Lynn University officials have confirmed that the U.S. Department of State has notified the family of the passing of Christine Gianacaci. Christine was a sophomore from Hopewell, N.J.

Fourteen members of the Lynn community were in Haiti on a "Journey of Hope" service trip when a magnitude 7.0 earthquake struck the island on Jan. 12. Eight (8) members of that group were evacuated from the country and returned to campus on Jan. 14. Two students and two faculty members remain unaccounted for.

The Gianacaci family has requested privacy at this time and will not be taking or returning calls for comment. The university asks that members of the media please honor that request.

No additional information is available at this hour. Any breaking news will be shared exclusively on the Lynn alert site (www.lynn.edu/alert).

President Kevin M. Ross offers reaction
Lynn University President Kevin M. Ross has issued the following statement (below) in reaction to today's news. This will be the only public statement offered at this time.

"We are devastated to have lost Christine- a young woman who was a bright light in the life of her family, her friends, classmates and teachers. Our thoughts and prayers are with John and Jean, J.P., and the rest of the Gianacaci family, as well as Christine's friends and the many other people who were touched by her life."

MEDIA NOTES:
Lynn University's alert site updates from Jan. 12-Jan. 27 have been archived on the Lynn.edu news page as a service to the news media.

Laura Vann, public relations specialist at Lynn University, will be the main point of contact beginning Saturday for any press inquiries. Laura can be reached at lvann@lynn.edu or 561-237-7967. Should there be a need, Michele Morris, vice president of marketing and communication, will be available to serve as the university's official spokesperson (561-237-7788 or mmorris@lynn.edu).

Lynn officials notified of death of Journey of Hope student Courtney Hayes

Lynn University officials have received word that the U.S. Department of State contacted the Hayes family earlier today to confirm the passing of Lynn student Courtney Hayes. Courtney was one of four students still unaccounted for in Haiti. Two faculty members and three students remain missing at this hour.

Fourteen members of the Lynn community were in Haiti on Jan. 12 when a magnitude 7 earthquake struck the island as a part of a "Journey of Hope" mission with partner Food for the Poor, an international nonprofit. Eight (8) members of that group were evacuated from the country and returned to campus three days after the quake.

The university has no additional details to share. At such a time that additional details become available, that information will be shared exclusively on the Lynn alert site (www.lynn.edu/alert). Alert site updates from Jan. 12-Jan. 27 have been archived on the Lynn.edu news page.

President Kevin M. Ross offers reaction
Lynn University President Kevin M. Ross issued the following statement after learning of the confirmed death of Courtney Hayes. This will be the only public statement offered at this time.

"The news we received this evening was not the news we ever wanted to hear. Courtney Hayes was an inspiration in life, and in death will be remembered for her giving spirit, warm smile and so much more. Our prayers are with the Hayes family this evening, as well as with Matt, the Sears family, and all of Courtney's loved ones and admirers here in Boca Raton, in Georgia, and around the world."

MEDIA ALERT: Families of four of the missing release press statement

(In an attempt to avoid answering multiple media requests following today's press conference at Lynn University, the parents of Britney Gengel, Courtney Hayes, Stephanie Crispinelli, and Christine Gianacaci, have prepared the following statement for use by the media. No further comments will be given at this time.)

STATEMENT:
Today Lynn University President Kevin Ross urged the Lynn community to begin to heal and grieve for the four students and two professors still missing in Haiti. We understand and respect the motivations behind these statements. In recent days we have encouraged a similar mindset in some of the eight students who returned from Haiti unharmed - students with whom we have formed a lasting attachment.  They need to continue their education and focus on the work ahead of them, even at this difficult time.

For the student body we understand that life goes on. But as parents of missing children, our hearts are heavy today. We, the families of Britney, Courtney, Stephanie and Christine, still have hope and will not give up hope until our daughters are found. Even as we are preparing for the worst, we are also hoping for a miracle.

At this moment, having our daughters returned to us is our highest priority. We have the assurances of those in the Department of State and those on site at the Hotel Montana that they will "to the best of (their) abilities" work to return our daughters to us. We pray that they can deliver on this promise, and that they can do the same for all of those lost at the Hotel Montana, as well as the estimated 4,500 Americans missing in Haiti.

Thank you:
While we are focused on getting news of our daughters, we cannot help but want to again thank all of those on-site at the Hotel Montana, officials at the State Department and U.S. Embassy, our elected officials, Lynn University administrators, and others we don't even know, who have worked tirelessly on our behalf - and on behalf of all the families of the missing. And thanks also to our friends, families, and communities. Though our circumstances may make it hard to say enough, we are so grateful for all your prayers, support and efforts.

Privacy request:
Finally, we want to request that the media give us the privacy and distance we need at this time. We have been bombarded with requests and questions and, for the sake of ourselves and our families, request privacy. In the event that we feel the need to make other public statements, we expect to do those only through a statement of this kind.

Signed byLin and Lenny Crispinelli (parents of Stephanie), Jean and John Gianacaci (parents of Christine), Cherylann and Leonard Gengel (parents of Britney) and Franklin and Angie Hayes (parents of Courtney).

Alert site to be updated next with breaking news

Going forward, the Lynn University alert site will be updated whenever new information becomes available regarding efforts at the Hotel Montana or the status of our missing six community members. At this time, no new details are available.
 
MEDIA NOTE:
Any news added to this site will continue to be distributed to the university's media alert list. Members of the media requiring clarification or additional information should contact Laura Vann (lvann@lynn.edu) in the office of public relations.

President Ross says time to grieve, celebrate has arrived for Lynn community

The following remarks were delivered by Lynn University President Kevin M. Ross at a press briefing on Wednesday, January 27, at 2 p.m.

For the last two hours I have been with our students, our staff, faculty and friends of the university to deliver difficult news. To the best of our knowledge, recovery operations now dominate the landscape at the Hotel Montana. Fifteen days after the earthquake that devastated the country of Haiti and imperiled the lives of 14 of our community members, we are still without four of our students and two of our faculty members. And it is time for us now to grieve, and to begin to heal.
 
We had waited for good news, hoped for a miracle - prayed for a different outcome. But it is apparently not to be.

Religious traditions around the world reserve a special reverence for those that serve others - and especially those that perish in that service. Our six missing - Stephanie Crispinelli, Brittany Gengel, Christine Gianacaci, Courtney Hayes, Patrick Hartwick and Richard Bruno - will always be counted among those ranks.

Theirs was a journey of hope. Theirs - a selfless commitment to serving others. They were on the ground in Haiti to find, feed and focus on the poor of that nation. In the day and a half before the quake, they did just that - doling out rice at a distribution center and holding the hands of sick children in a dilapidated orphanage. They intended to do much more. In their absence, it is incumbent upon the rest of us to follow in their stead.

Today begins a new phase in our journey. Today, we begin to grieve as individuals and as an institution. And in doing so, we join the families of our missing students and professors, who continue to grieve at this hour - and who are certainly carrying the heaviest load. We know that even as these wounds open anew, they will also begin to heal. In the days and weeks ahead we will be focused on that healing.

So much of this tragedy in Haiti has unfolded in public. And I do not regret that. The outpouring of compassion and offerings of prayer have humbled us, steadied us, and emboldened us. We will forever be grateful for those prayers and well wishes, and grateful for the messengers who helped draw those eyes - and those hearts - to our plight and to the plight of all those in need.

But in the days and weeks ahead, we must retreat from public view. The healing we require and the ceremonies we will hold must be private. Though these events and commemorations may occur on the quieter reaches of our campus, I want everyone hearing this now to know you will be there with us. You have helped us through this time, and we owe you a debt of thanks for that.

Over the course of the last two weeks we have been asked if we can sustain our commitment to international experiences and education as a result of this tragedy. I do not want to leave this podium without answering that question once more.

Of course we will continue to encourage our students to live, work and serve abroad, as well as here at home. It is an important part of who we are, and therefore, a defining characteristic of our graduates.

But we'll also continue this work because we owe it to our six. Our students will continue to feed the poor, aid the sick, and comfort the hurting... and they will spread the word about the things they see and the needs they encounter. They will do this, whether I think they should or not, because it is a passion that has been cultivated on this campus in large part by the very students who were serving on that Journey of Hope. 

Though we have determined that now is the time to grieve and begin to heal, we also know that our healing will not be complete without the return of the remains of all six of our missing to their families. The last time I stood here I pledged to support that plea. Thank you to those that have come forward to support this imperative. But I'm sorry to say today that many here are still anxious for more solid assurances. As long as that anxiety persists, they will have our voices and our labor behind them. I hope those assurances, which are so important to the healing process, come very soon.

Thank you again for your prayers and your support. Our prayers and thoughts continue to be with all of those hurting at this hour. My wish for them, for you, and for us, is for comfort to come soon.

6 p.m. Update: Efforts continue at Hotel Montana, President Ross to address campus Wednesday

Reports from the site of the Hotel Montana tonight suggest that search and rescue and recovery teams were both at work today. On a conference call for families this afternoon, State Department officials indicated that heavy equipment was in use as crews begin clearing away sections of the building. However, no official end to rescue efforts has been announced.

President Ross to address campus, media tomorrow
Lynn University President Kevin M. Ross will address students, staff and faculty tomorrow at 11:50 a.m. in the Lynn student center dining hall. Private meetings with the university's Academic Council and other offices and individuals will follow.

MEDIA NOTE:

At 2 p.m., Ross will give a statement to, and answer questions from, credentialed media assembled on the Lynn University campus. This will be followed by a 2:30 p.m. conference call. Details for the conference call will be provided to media via the university's media alert distribution list.

No additional details are available at this hour. Barring any breaking news, the next update to this site will occur at 2 p.m. tomorrow.

11 a.m. Update: Rescue operations winding down at Hotel Montana, recovery phase as-yet unannounced

Reports from the ground in Port-au-Prince, as well as communications to families of the missing from the Department of State, indicate that search and rescue operations at the Hotel Montana are slowly transitioning to recovery. Heavy equipment is reportedly in use and U.S. search and rescue teams are said to be in the process of handing over the site to the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers later today. That said, no official pronouncement regarding the switch to recovery has been received.

As outlined in recent updates, Lynn University is still awaiting confirmation regarding the status of its missing four students and two faculty members. We are told that a consular with the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince will be reporting any news directly to the families. Lynn officials will pass on any news to the campus community via this site once permission is granted by the families.

No additional details are available at this hour. Barring any breaking news, the next update to the Lynn alert site (www.lynn.edu/alert) will occur at 6 p.m. today.

MEDIA NOTE:
Once an official change in status at the Hotel Montana site is announced, a Lynn spokesperson will be made available to members of the credentialed media to answer any questions. Details regarding such a press briefing and conference call will be communicated to all those on the university's media alert list.


6 p.m. Update: Rescue operations continue, no end date announced for those operations at Hotel Montana

Reports from the site today suggest that rescue operations continued throughout the day at the Hotel Montana. Live scent dogs were on site and quick responders were available to seek out any survivors.  

The university has not been notified - nor is it aware - of any formal switch to recovery operations at the hotel. In the event that such news is received it will be communicated to the campus community via this site.

No additional details are available at this hour.

Press reports still unconfirmed
Lynn officials have not seen evidence indicating that any of Lynn's missing four students or two faculty members have been located at the Hotel Montana. As indicated in the 11 a.m. briefing, once the university gets any confirmed reports, and has the permission of the families, that information will be updated to this alert site.

Spring classes begin
Today marked the beginning of Spring classes at Lynn University. The spring term follows a three-week January Term which began on Jan. 5 and ended Friday.

In the absence of breaking news, the next update to this site will occur at 11 a.m. tomorrow (Tuesday).
 
MEDIA NOTES:
No press briefing or conference has been scheduled for Tuesday. In the event of breaking news or updates, a briefing and conference call will be scheduled and media notified in advance via the university's media alert list.

11 a.m. Update: Work continues at Hotel Montana site, press reports regarding status of missing remain unconfirmed

Reports to Lynn University officials this morning indicate that rescue operations continue in some capacity at the Hotel Montana site, but that work on-site is increasingly shifting toward search and recovery. According to this morning's updates, a search and rescue team from Fairfax, Va., is still on site and will remain until fully relieved by U.S. military teams.

At this time, neither the State Department nor the Haiti Taskforce team has officially called an end to rescue operations at the Hotel Montana. Once official word is received, that transition will be noted in an update to the Lynn alert site (www.lynn.edu/alert).

Press reports unconfirmed
Yesterday and this morning there have been a number of press reports indicating that one or more of the missing Journey of Hope members have been identified on site. Lynn University cannot confirm those reports. At this time, university officials have not learned of any Department of State notifications. As noted below, such official notifications are the responsibility of the State Department and will directed initially toward the families. The university will only confirm such reports after they are received by the families, the university is notified, and Lynn officials are granted permission to share that information with the campus community and general public.

Barring any breaking news, the next update to this site will be at 6 p.m. today.

MEDIA NOTES:
Reminder: Lynn officials have continued to be asked to verify press reports concerning the status of our missing students and faculty. As noted above, the university is relying on State Department officials to relay such news and will report such details only after they are received by the families (university will not be notified first), and university officials receive permission to share that news with the campus community and general public. Only after that news is received and those permissions granted will the university post such information on its alert site (www.lynn.edu/alert).

No press briefings or conference calls have been scheduled for today. However, if news emerges (including a change in status at the Montana site), such a briefing and call will be scheduled and media notified via Lynn's media alert list. 

6 p.m. Update: Rescue operations winding down for the day at Hotel Montana site

Despite reports suggesting that only recovery efforts were underway in the country, rescue teams that included live scent dogs were said to be on site today at the Hotel Montana. However, teams searching the site at this hour are expected to be ending their search for the day and will not be continuing efforts overnight. Lynn officials have not heard whether search and rescue efforts will resume on Monday.

No additional details are available at this time. Barring any breaking news, this site will be updated next at 11 a.m. Monday.

MEDIA NOTES:
Lynn officials have been asked to verify a variety of different press reports today concerning the status of our missing students and faculty. The university is relying on State Department officials to relay such news and will report such details only after they are received by the families (university will not be notified first), confirmed, and university officials receive permission to share that news with the campus community and general public. Only after that news is received and those permissions granted will the university post such information on this site or offer comment.

No press briefings or conference calls have been scheduled for tomorrow. However, if news emerges (including a change in status at the Montana site), such a briefing and call will be scheduled and media notified via Lynn's media alert list.

11 a.m. Update: S&R; continues today at Hotel Montana, Lynn staff return from Dominican Republic

According to reports from the ground, search and rescue operations continue today at the Hotel Montana in Port-au-Prince. The size of the operations are said to be consistent with yesterday's forces, and includes the search and rescue team from Fairfax, Va.

No additional news regarding the whereabouts or condition of any of the four missing Lynn students and two faculty members has been received at this hour. Whenever the university receives any such news the campus community will be alerted via the Lynn alert site (www.lynn.edu/alert). The next regularly scheduled update will occur at approximately 6 p.m. this evening.

Staff in Dominican Republic return to Lynn
On Friday evening the remaining two members of the Lynn team stationed in the Dominican Republic returned to Boca Raton. The two Lynn staffers had been in the Dominican since Thursday, January 14, and had led a team that had searched hospitals and transportation centers in Santo Domingo for any news regarding our six missing community members. They have since been folded back into the crisis management team on campus, which continues to receive regular briefings from contractors on the ground and others at the U.S. Embassy (and other U.S. agencies) regarding ongoing search activities.

MEDIA NOTES:
In the absence of new details regarding the location or condition of our missing six Lynn community members, no press briefing or conference call is planned for today. However, in the event that news becomes available, both will be scheduled and media notified in advance via the university's media alert list.

6 p.m. Update: Search and rescue operations continue at Hotel Montana

Though reports indicate that the Haitian government has officially announced the nationwide transition from search and rescue operations to search and recovery, rescue activities are said to be continuing today at the Hotel Montana. Two American teams (Fairfax, Va., and Los Angeles) are said to be among those on site today seeking out survivors.

No additional information is available at this time. Barring any breaking news, the next update to this site will be at 11 a.m. Sunday.

MEDIA NOTE:
Neither the U.S. State Department nor the U.S. Embassy in Haiti has officially announced the end of search and rescue operations at the Hotel Montana. Once operations are officially transitioned to recovery, a Lynn official will be made available to the media to answer any questions related to this change.

11 a.m. Update: Reports suggest that S & R operations continue at Hotel Montana today

Lynn University officials this morning are closely following major media reports that suggest the Haitian government has called off search and rescue operations in the country. At this hour, there are conflicting reports about whether or not such operations have in fact ended at the Hotel Montana site in particular. Though there seems to have been a continued diminishing in size of the rescue operations at the site, sources are suggesting to Lynn officials that rescue operations will continue today at the Hotel Montana.

Such a site status can only be officially declared by the Haitian government or publicly confirmed by U.S. officials. At this hour, Lynn officials have seen no such official reports.

No additional details are available at this time. Barring any breaking news, the next update to this site will occur at 6 p.m. this evening.

MEDIA NOTES:

Candle lighting to continue this evening
Lynn students are expected to continue their vigil for our missing six community members tonight and will be lighting luminaries and candles around campus. Media on site at Lynn are free to approach those students lighting candles at the base of the Haitian flag at the front of campus. However, we continue to ask that media honor the students' request that lighting and vigil activities not be disrupted at the Lynn student center and elsewhere on campus.

No press briefing, conference call scheduled for today
With no new updates to provide, Lynn officials are not scheduling a press briefing today, nor a conference call. However, in the event there is breaking news, both will be scheduled and media will be notified in advance via the university's media alert e-mail list.

6 p.m. Update: Search and rescue operations continue at Hotel Montana

Reports today from the site of the Hotel Montana indicate that search and rescue operations continue, though the number of teams at work is diminished today compared to three or four days ago.

No additional news is available. At this time, the university has received no information from the U.S. Embassy or others regarding the future status of the Hotel Montana site. At this time, reports to Lynn officials indicate only that search and rescue operations continue.

Barring any breaking news, the next update to this site will occur at 11 a.m. tomorrow (Saturday). A second update to this site will follow at 6 p.m. 

11 a.m. update: Search and rescue continues at the Hotel Montana

Search and rescue continues today on the site of the Hotel Montana. Reports to Lynn officials indicate that these activities will continue throughout the day. No additional details are available at this hour.

MEDIA:
Barring any breaking news, the next update to this site will be at 6 p.m. this evening (Friday). In the event of breaking news, media will be alerted and a conference call line will be opened and press briefing scheduled. Otherwise, no press briefings will be held today.

8 p.m. Update: Search and rescue operations continue at Hotel Montana tonight

Reports received by Lynn University officials confirm that search and rescue operations continue this evening at the Hotel Montana, and are expected to extend through the night. Efforts also continue this evening in the Dominican Republic, where Lynn staff members have been stationed for a week.

No additional details are available at this hour. Barring any breaking news, the next update to this site will be at 11 a.m. Friday. A second update will follow Friday evening at 6 p.m. In the event of breaking news, media will be alerted and a conference call line will be opened and press briefing scheduled. Otherwise, no press briefings will be held on Friday.

President Kevin M. Ross remarks from 5 p.m. press briefing

As we all know, the world suffered one of the greatest natural disasters in history last Tuesday. The 7.0 earthquake that was centered just outside Port-au-Prince imperiled the lives of all those in Haiti, including 14 members of our Lynn University family who were there on a mission trip. All 14 were on site at the Hotel Montana when the quake struck, and we have reason to believe that our four missing students and two faculty may be there still.

In the nine days since that tragedy, we have all been captivated by the stories of heroism, triumph, anguish and loss that have followed in the wake of this earthquake. And every day, we rejoice for what good news has been broadcast out of the country: the elderly woman rescued from beneath a crumbled cathedral; the child pulled alive and almost completely well from a wrecked home. As the family members of our missing students and employees have said in recent days, we have taken comfort in these reports, and celebrated them almost as if they were our own good news.

And for good reason. It is our good news. This tragedy is not a Lynn University tragedy alone. It does not affect just us, our community members, and their families. It affects us all. It affects people from around the world. It affects those that survived, and those that did not. And it impacts most severely those in Haiti itself - the people who call that country home.

Our "Journey of Hope" students went to Haiti to deliver hope. Eight have returned. And six remain missing. We still have hope- hope that a miracle is in the making. Hope that our six are found safe and sound. And hope that many others too will be freed and reunited with loved ones around the world. That remains our most ardent wish here at Lynn University.

But there is another hope we have. A different kind of hope. And it is that hope that I wish to express tonight. We have hope that whatever the days ahead may bring, that we have the United States government's assurance that every person lost in this tragedy will be returned to their loved ones.

I want this personally. I want this for the families of our missing students and faculty, and our more than three dozen employees and eight students with family missing in the country. And I want it for the campus community I serve- a community that will need to grieve as well.

This is needed for every grieving father, son, mother, daughter, friend and neighbor who is aching at this very moment for a phone call. Whenever that phone call comes, I join the families of our missing six in demanding that such a call contain news of the whereabouts of the missing. A missing family member, whether alive or dead, must be returned to his or her loved ones.

Forces are mounting in defense against such a call. From the outset of this crisis my office has been served in immeasurable ways by Senator George S. LeMieux and Congressman Ron Klein and their staffs in Florida and D.C. The two have helped however they could to aid us in our search efforts. And tonight they are standing with us to ask Secretary Clinton and others to ensure that all Americans missing and unaccounted for in Haiti be returned home.

This is the assurance our campus community - and the families of these missing loved ones - will require in the days ahead. And many other American families will appreciate the same. Tonight I have a letter already signed by Senator LeMieux urging the Secretary of State, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and the U.S. Agency for International Development to continue "search and rescue efforts until the possibility of survival no longer exists" and to do "everything within (their) power to ensure that every American known to be missing in Haiti is located and returned home."

I am so thankful for the senator's support, and the support of Congressman Klein, who has also pledged to back us in this push. We hope all of our elected officials will join us - including those in Massachusetts, Georgia, New Jersey and New York, the home states of our four missing students. So many have already shown their support and concern. But now, we need assurances. We need a commitment to returning the missing to their families. Only this will give the families of the victims the peace they need to carry on.

We have been saying from the beginning how thankful we are for the prayers and support we have received here at Lynn University. The outpouring of support has been incredible. Please continue to offer those prayers and cross those fingers. We still believe in miracles. And we wish those same miracles upon all of you who are still uncertain at this hour.

Thank you all. And God bless.

MEDIA ALERT: President Ross to address assembled media at 5 p.m.

Lynn University President Kevin M. Ross will address the media at 5 p.m. this evening (Thursday). Dr. Ross will discuss the ongoing search for four missing students and two faculty in Haiti. He will follow his brief remarks by taking questions from the assembled media.

A 5:30 p.m. conference call with reporters will follow the address. Journalists wishing to be added to that list should sign-up online with their name, outlet and location.

11 a.m. update: Search and rescue operations continue in Haiti

Reports to Lynn University officials this morning indicate that search and rescue operations continue on the site of the Hotel Montana in Port-au-Prince. However, those reports indicate that the resources allotted to that effort today appear to be somewhat diminished from yesterday. Search operations also continue this morning in the Dominican Republic, where Lynn staff remain engaged in the process of searching hospitals and transportation centers for news regarding the condition of our missing four students and two faculty members.


No additional updates are available at this time. The next regular update will be at 4 p.m. If breaking news emerges before then, members of the media will be notified via Lynn's media alert list.

8 p.m. update: Search and rescue efforts continue at Hotel Montana

Search and rescue efforts at the Hotel Montana site in Port-au-Prince continue this evening. Work is expected to continue throughout the night.

No additional details are available at this hour. Barring any breaking news, this site will be updated next at 11 a.m. Thursday. Additional updates will be added at 4 p.m. and 8 p.m.

4 p.m. Update: Efforts continue on site of Hotel Montana

Search and rescue efforts continue at this hour on the site of the Hotel Montana in Port-au-Prince. Reports put the number of active search and rescue teams at seven. Efforts also continue this afternoon in the Dominican Republic, where Lynn staffers are again visiting hospitals to seek out information regarding the university's missing four students and two faculty members.

No additional news or details are available at this hour. Barring any breaking news, the next update to this site will be at approximately 8 p.m. this evening.

11 a.m. update: No new information available at this hour, search continues at Hotel Montana

The condition and location of the missing Lynn University students from the "Journey of Hope-Haiti" are still unknown at this hour, though information provided to Lynn officials indicates that search and rescue operations continue at the Hotel Montana.

Magnitude 6.1 aftershock in Haiti
Shortly after 6 a.m. this morning, a magnitude 6.1 aftershock struck near Port-au-Prince, according to the USGS (U.S. Geological Survey). The tremor was confirmed to be felt at the Hotel Montana site. Search and rescue efforts were temporarily suspended, but reports indicate that they have since resumed.

MEDIA:
At this time, no additional updates are available. No media conference calls or press briefings are planned for today. However, should news warranting comments emerge, both will be scheduled and media will be notified via media alert. Journalists wishing to be added to that list should sign up online with their name, outlet and location.

The next updates to this site are scheduled for 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. 

8 p.m. Update: Work continues at Hotel Montana site

Crews continue to work this evening on the Hotel Montana site, sources tell Lynn officials. Some half-dozen teams from across the world were said to be working the site throughout the afternoon, and activities are expected to continue through the night as well.

Activities also continue this evening in the Dominican Republic, where Lynn staff continue their efforts to locate Lynn's four missing students and two faculty members.

No additional information is available at this time. In the absence of breaking news, the next update to this site will be at 11 a.m. tomorrow morning. Updates will also occur at 4 p.m. and 8 p.m.

At this time, no media conference call or press briefings are planned for tomorrow. However, should news warranting comment emerge, both will be scheduled and media notified via media alert.


4 p.m. Update: No news at this hour

Search and rescue operations continue at this hour on the Hotel Montana site in Port-au-Prince. However, no additional details regarding Lynn's missing four students and two faculty members are available at this hour.

President Ross comforts campus community

In remarks to the campus community today at 12:30 p.m., Lynn University President Kevin M. Ross updated students and employees on the ongoing search efforts in Haiti and the Dominican Republic.

In his comments, delivered to a standing room only crowd in the Lynn student center cafeteria, Ross pressed everyone to continue to be hopeful for a good end to the search, and pointed out counseling services that were available to all members of the campus community should they need them. He also reported that scheduled classes and athletic events would continue without interruption at this time.

Lynn University Haiti Crisis Fund site now live

In this morning's 11 a.m. briefing, university officials announced a new university fund available to those wishing to support "members of our campus community, including students, faculty, and staff members, who have been affected by the Haiti earthquake event."

To learn more, or make a donation, visit our.lynn.edu/HaitiCrisisFund.

No additional updates are available at this time. Barring any breaking news, this site will next be updated at 8 p.m. today.


11 a.m. Update: Search efforts continue today, fund established

Reports overnight and this morning indicate that search and rescue operations continue at the Hotel Montana in Port-au-Prince, where Lynn students and faculty on the "Journey of Hope - Haiti" trip were staying when the earthquake struck. As reported in yesterday's 7 p.m. update, a Miami-Dade urban search and rescue squad is said to be on site and participating as a part of the larger coordinated rescue effort. Efforts also continue today in the Dominican Republic to seek news regarding our missing four students and two faculty.

Among other updates this morning, the crisis team at Lynn also received word that two university employees, who were vacationing in Haiti at the time of the earthquake, had made contact and were safe in the country.

President Ross to address campus
Classes are being suspended today between the hours of 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. on the Lynn campus, as offices, colleges and students gather to get the latest update on the Haiti situation from members of the university cabinet and Crisis Management Team. President Ross will address the campus personally at 12:30 p.m. in the Lynn student center.

Fund established to aid those touched by tragedy
In addition to the 14 Lynn families touched by the earthquake that occurred in Haiti last week, the university has some three dozen university employees, and eight students who are from Haiti. In aid of all of those families, and to answer requests received from alumni, students and friends of the university over the last week, Lynn has created a Lynn University Haiti Crisis Fund. Monies directed to that fund will be used "to assist members of our campus community, including students, faculty, and staff members, who have been affected by the Haiti earthquake event." The Lynn alert site (www.lynn.edu/alert) will be updated today to include a link to that fund.

As the wording associated with this fund currently states, the university encourages everyone to "support relief efforts for Haiti and her people. We leave the specific charity to your discretion."

No additional updates are available at this time. Barring any breaking news, this site will next be updated at 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. today.

MEDIA NOTES:
Lynn spokesman Jason Hughes will meet with media on site today at 11 a.m. to answer any questions. A conference call line will be opened for credentialed media at 11:30 a.m.


7 p.m. Update: Search continues at Hotel Montana site this evening

This evening, reports from the ground suggest that search and rescue efforts continue at the Hotel Montana site, and that a team from Miami-Dade arrived on the scene today to support the effort. This afternoon and evening, activities continue as well in the Dominican Republic, where family members and Lynn staff and faculty continue to comb airports, hospitals and other transfer sites for news of our missing four students and two faculty members.

No additional details are available at this time. Barring any breaking news, this site will be updated next at 11 a.m. tomorrow (Tuesday).

MEDIA NOTES:

Tuesday press briefing, conference call
A press briefing for media on-site at Lynn University will be held Tuesday at 11 a.m. A conference call for credentialed media will follow at 11:30 a.m. Call details will be provided to media on Lynn's media list. Journalists wishing to be added to that list should sign-up online with their name, outlet and location.

Additional updates will be posted Tuesday at 4 p.m. and 8 p.m.


3 p.m. Update: No new information available at this hour

Lynn University officials continue to receive reports regarding ongoing search and rescue activities today at the Hotel Montana (Port-au-Prince, Haiti). The university is also receiving regular updates concerning our search team's efforts in the Dominican Republic today. However, no additional details regarding the location or condition of our missing four (4) students and two (2) faculty have become available at this time.

Barring any breaking news, the next update to the alert site (www.lynn.edu/alert) will occur at 7 p.m. In the event of breaking news, Lynn will open a conference call line and host a public briefing if necessary. That information will be communicated via the university's media list.

Reminder: Classes suspended Tuesday
On Tuesday, Jan. 19, classes at Lynn will be suspended between 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. At 12:30 p.m., President Kevin Ross will address the entire campus community in the Lynn student center cafeteria. (This is a private meeting and will not be open to the general public.)

MEDIA NOTES:

Luminaries to be lit this evening at 7 p.m.
Lynn students will continue to light candles each night on campus until all members of our campus community have returned home from Haiti. Media on campus during the lightings are able to interview students and photograph their activities. However, at the students' request, we are limiting such activities to the lightings occurring at the flag poles at the front of campus.

11 a.m. update

Whereabouts of students, faculty still unknown this morning; classes suspended 11-1 Tuesday
The condition and location of the missing Lynn University students from the "Journey of Hope-Haiti" are still unknown at this hour, though information provided to Lynn officials indicates that search and rescue operations continue at the Hotel Montana. Additional search operations by Lynn staff and family members of the missing also are continuing today in the Dominican Republic.

No additional information is available at this hour. Barring any breaking news, the next update to this site will occur at 3 p.m.

Classes suspended
On Tuesday, Jan. 19, classes at Lynn will be suspended between 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. During that period, the university will hold internal office and college meetings to update the campus on the ongoing search activities. And at 12:30 p.m., President Kevin Ross will again address the entire campus community in the Lynn student center cafeteria. (This is a private meeting and will not be open to the general public.)

MEDIA NOTES:
Lynn spokesman Jason Hughes will make himself available to media on campus at 11 a.m. this morning to answer any questions members of the media may have. A conference call will follow at 11:30 a.m. Call details have been provided to media on Lynn's media list. Journalists wishing to be added to that list should sign-up online with their name, outlet and location.

Candlelighting on campus
Lynn students will continue to light candles each night on campus until all members of our campus community have returned home from Haiti. Media on campus during the lightings are able to interview students and photograph their activities. However, at the students' request, we are limiting such activities to the lightings occurring at the flag poles at the front of campus. 



Family and Student Press Statements

At the request of six of our students who returned from Haiti, as well as the families of our six missing, the public relations office at Lynn is compiling media opportunities for their review. If you have a request of them, please funnel that through Laura Vann (lvann@lynn.edu). Given the volume of requests we're receiving, we can only commit at this time to replying when a family member or student agrees to do a press interview. However, we will verify receipt of all requests.

7 p.m. - No new details available this evening, search efforts continue

Lynn University officials have received no new updates today regarding the condition or location of the four (4) students and two (2) faculty members who are still missing following Tuesday's earthquake. Throughout the day, operations in Haiti and the Dominican Republic have continued, and Lynn's Crisis Management Team is told that operations at the Hotel Montana will continue through the night.

As additional details become available that information will be shared with the campus community and general public via this site (www.lynn.edu/alert).

MEDIA NOTES:

Monday press briefing, conference call
A press briefing for media on-site at Lynn University will be held Monday at 11 a.m. A conference call for credentialed media will follow at 11:30 a.m. Call details have been provided to media on Lynn's media list. Journalists wishing to be added to that list should sign-up online with their name, outlet and location.

3 p.m. - Work continues this afternoon, no additional information available

At this hour, activities on the ground in Haiti and the Dominican Republic continue, though no new information regarding the condition or whereabouts of our missing Lynn students or faculty are available. 

As that information becomes available, the Lynn community and public will be updated via this site. The next update will be posted at 7 p.m. barring any breaking news.

MEDIA NOTES:

Students re-lighting luminaries tonight, every night going forward

Lynn University students held a luminary-lighting and ceremony yesterday evening as a part of a "Hope Vigil" for those students and faculty still missing in Haiti. Tonight, the students intend to repeat the event, by lighting luminaries outside the campus student center. It's an act, says organizer Ryan Brooks, the students intend to repeat every night until the missing return to campus. 

Students are inviting media to attend the lighting, which will begin at 8 p.m. outside the student center. Brooks can be reached with questions at 215-817-6828.

Family and Student Press Statements

At the request of six of our students who returned from Haiti, as well as the families of our six missing, the public relations office at Lynn is now compiling media opportunities for their review. If you have a request of them, please funnel that through Laura Vann (lvann@lynn.edu). Given the volume of requests we're receiving, we can only commit at this time to replying when a family member or student agrees to do a press interview. However, we will verify receipt of all requests.


No new details emerge overnight regarding location, condition of missing

Reports overnight and this morning indicate that activity on the site of the Hotel Montana continues this morning. Reports to Lynn officials are that there are five "teams" performing search and rescue work on the site. Members of a specially-deployed S&R team that joined Lynn's initial contractor in Haiti are at work as a part of this coordinated effort.

Elsewhere in Haiti this morning, as in the Dominican Republic, university agents and friends are continuing the work of combing hospital lists, embassy rolls and transportation centers for news of our missing four (4) students and two (2) faculty members.

Yesterday, six of the eight Lynn students who have returned from Haiti spoke with members of the press, and last night at 6:30 p.m. family members representing the missing staff and students held a press conference on campus. Both groups expressed a common belief: that our students and faculty members were alive and in need of rescue. This continues to be the belief of all involved in this rescue effort.

Our thoughts today continue to also be with members of our Lynn community who have loved ones in Haiti. We have dozens of employees we have spoken with who have deep family roots in the country, and they continue to be in our thoughts and prayers this morning. That community is clearly within the minds of a group of our returned "Journey of Hope" students, which yesterday placed flowers at the base of the Haitian flag, which flies on a flag pole to my left.

The university last night set up an e-mail account for members of the public to use when offering information that may aid us in our search efforts. We are thankful for any offers of support or information that can be provided, and will attempt to respond to - and act upon - any offers and information we can use without slowing our own ongoing search operations.

Once again, thank you for your prayers, offers of support, and well wishes. They are felt and appreciated by us all. 

MEDIA NOTES:
Lynn spokesman Jason Hughes will make himself available to media on campus at 11 a.m. this morning to answer any questions members of the media may have. Call details have been provided to credentialed media on Lynn's media list. Journalists wishing to be added to that list should sign-up online with their name, outlet and location.

Family and Student Press Statements
At the request of six of our students who returned from Haiti, as well as the families of our six missing, the public relations office at Lynn is now compiling media opportunities for their review. If you have a request of them, please funnel that through Laura Vann (lvann@lynn.edu). Given the volume of requests we're receiving, we can only commit at this time to replying when a family member or student agrees to do a press interview. However, we will verify receipt of all requests.

Lynn's Missing Faculty Members

Patrick Hartwick
Patrick Hartwick


Richard Bruno
Richard Bruno

10 p.m. update: Teams continue search in Haiti, Dominican Republic

This evening efforts to locate four (4) missing Lynn University students and two (2) faculty members in Haiti and the Dominican Republic continue. Reports from the ground tell us rescue teams at the Hotel Montana continue their work tonight. And efforts to locate Lynn's six missing community members also continue tonight in the Dominican Republic, with teams searching hospital and embassy rolls, just as Lynn agents have been doing today in Haiti.

No additional details regarding Lynn's six missing community members are available. Barring any breaking news, the next update to this site will be at 11 a.m. Sunday. Other updates will be posted at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. unless important new information emerges.

Web Address Created for Tips/Offers of Assistance

In a press conference this evening, parents and family members of Stephanie Crispinelli, Brittany Gengel, Christine Gianacaci, and Courtney Hayes, asked that those wishing to offer assistance or information to aid rescue efforts to contact Lynn University. A dedicated e-mail line has been created for that purpose.

Anyone who can provide information or offer assistance to help rescue the remaining six (6) members of the Journey of Hope can e-mail Lynn's Crisis Management Team at Haiti@lynn.edu. Already, tips and offers of assistance have been received as a result of that plea.

MEDIA NOTES:

Names of the families who participated in the 6:50 p.m. press conference at Lynn University on Jan. 16, 2010
(Parent's and family names follow those of their loved one.)

*At the request of several media outlets, we're providing the names of those who participated in tonight's press conference. They are:

Brittany Gengel (student)
Parents Cherylann and Leonard Gengel and Bernie, brother

Stephanie Crispinelli (student)
Parents Lin and Lenny Crispinelli and Nicholas and Mike, brothers

Christine Gianacaci (student)
Parents Jean and John Gianacaci and JP, brother

Courtney Hayes (student)
Boyfriend Matt Sears and his father, Phillip

Sunday press briefing, conference call
A press briefing for media on-site at Lynn University will be held Sunday at 11 a.m. Conference calls for credentialed media will follow at 11:30 a.m. Call details will be provided to credentialed media on Lynn's media list. Journalists wishing to be added to that list should sign-up online with their name, outlet and location.

MEDIA ALERT: Families of 4 Lynn students still unaccounted for to address media at 6:30 p.m. at Lynn University

Members of the four families whose daughters are still unaccounted for will address the media at 6:30 p.m. this evening (Saturday) on the Lynn University campus. The families of Stephanie Crispinelli, Christine Gianacaci, Courtney Hayes, and Britney Gengel, will deliver a short statement and then take a few questions.


Stephanie Crispinelli
 Stephanie Crispinelli


Courtney Hayes
Courtney Elizabeth Hayes


Christine Gianacaci

Christine Gianacaci


Britney Gengel

Britney Gengel

MEDIA ALERT: Interviews scheduled with six "Journey of Hope-Haiti" students

Six members of the "Journey of Hope to Haiti" students who have returned from the country are granting two interview requests this afternoon - a short taped group interview and a conference call that will follow. The participating students are: Tom Schloemer, Mike DeMatteo, Lindsay Doran, Daniela Montealegre, Nikki Fantauzzi, and Paul (P.J.) Tyska). The interview is being taped and pool feed coordinates are offered (see below). 

A conference call will follow this interview at approximately 3:15 p.m. The line will open shortly before that time and remain open until the students arrive. Two members of the six member team are expected to speak on behalf of the group.

MEDIA NOTES:

At this time, it is this group's intention to limit all public comments to these two opportunities. It is their stated wish to tell their story and focus attention on their six missing classmates and professors.

Conference call details

Call details will be provided to credentialed media on Lynn's media list. Journalists wishing to be added to that list should sign-up online with their name, outlet and location.

**The regularly scheduled press update for 3 p.m. will be delayed until 7 p.m. as a result of these calls. Any breaking news prior to that, however, will be communicated to the campus community and our media list as soon as is possible.

Work continues to locate missing Lynn students, staff

This morning and throughout the night, work continued to locate and rescue the six (6) remaining members of Lynn University's "Journey for Hope-Haiti" team.

Hotel Montana

Reports we've received confirm that search and rescue operations have continued throughout the night at the Hotel Montana site. Our original contractor and rescue team on the ground continues its work at this hour, concentrating resources on the site of the hotel where our group was last known to be. A reinforcement team loaded with light search and rescue equipment is expected to join those teams this morning already on the ground who, we're told, still have crews urgently looking for survivors today.

The second rescue team under contract with Lynn was also delayed last evening when a flight on which they were flying was turned back at Port-au-Prince airport. Our own staff has since secured them seats on an 11 a.m. charter helicopter flight.

Dominican Republic

Lynn teams consisting of family members and staff are still in the Dominican Republic at this hour as well, and continue their efforts to canvass hospitals, transfer points and airports for news of our missing staff and students. The new arrivals were debriefed upon landing yesterday and are continuing this work at this hour.

Efforts Continue

From the beginning, other resources - in addition to international and national aid organizations and military units - have been brought to bear on Lynn's behalf, and those efforts continue today as well. We had another update last night from a former staff member who has been traveling to the hotel site by foot to search for news of our students and staff among those evacuating the injured. And yesterday we received another update from a Lynn alumnus who has been on site for two days aiding in rescue efforts in the hopes of helping find our students and staff.

And, of course, today the university continues to seek information regarding the whereabouts of university staff in the country. The two staff members known to have been vacationing in the country are still unaccounted for at this hour.

No additional details are available at this time. Barring any breaking news, the next update and press briefing will be at 3 p.m., and will be followed by a 3:30 p.m. conference call for credentialed press. 

10 p.m. update: Teams continue search in Haiti, Dominican Republic

This evening efforts to locate four (4) missing Lynn University students and two (2) faculty members in Haiti and the Dominican Republic continue. A rescue team working on Lynn's behalf continues its work on the site of the Hotel Montana this evening. Efforts to locate Lynn's six missing community members also continue tonight in the Dominican Republic. A plane carrying family members and university staff landed this afternoon, where they joined a team of Lynn staff already on the ground.

Beyond these operational updates, no additional details are available. Barring any breaking news, the next update to this site will be at 11 a.m. Saturday. Other updates will be posted at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. unless important new information emerges.

MEDIA NOTES:

Saturday press briefings, conference calls
A press briefing for media on-site at Lynn University will be held Saturday at both 11 a.m. and at 3 p.m. Conference calls for credentialed media will follow at 11:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. Call details will be provided to credentialed media on Lynn's media list. Journalists wishing to be added to that list should sign-up online with their name, outlet and location.

Parents, Haiti students unavailable for comment
To respect the privacy of our "Journey for Hope" students and their families, the university continues to refrain from facilitating contact between the families/students and the media.

Search and rescue unit expected at Hotel Montana site shortly, second rescue group en-route / 4 p.m.

At this hour, very little in the way of new information has come to light regarding the condition or location of the remaining six members of the Lynn University "Journey for Hope" group. However, what new details are known regarding ongoing activities are included below.

Hotel Montana rescue efforts ongoing
Lynn officials are told that the rescue group aiding in locating missing Lynn students and faculty has a number of teams in different locations today in Port-au-Prince. Two-member teams are working separately at the Hotel Montana, airport, Red Cross stations, and embassy. A single individual from this rescue team is doing medical tent rounds trying to identify and locate our missing students and staff.

At this hour, personnel on the ground at the Hotel Montana are expecting a dedicated, five-person search and rescue unit to be arriving with orders to search those locations where missing Lynn faculty and students may be trapped. They have been supplied with photos, hotel renderings and the room numbers where we believe our students may have been at the time of the earthquake. We are told this group will be equipped to work through the night.

Rescue organization retained by Lynn to aid in effort
Units are en-route from the Dominican Republic this afternoon. No firm time of arrival at the Hotel Montana has been established. We'll give you more details on their efforts when we have them.

Efforts in the Dominican Republic
Three university staff members who landed in the Dominican Republic continue their work this afternoon and evening. In their latest update to our Crisis Management Team, we learned that they had canvassed every hospital in Santo Domingo looking for news regarding our students and faculty, and have checked the rolls of the embassy officials posted at those locations, among other activities. At this time, they have not yet located any missing members of our campus community.
 
We are told that the first of two transport planes has landed. Our staff members on the ground are now observing the unboarding and processing in the hopes of identifying Lynn members among these groups.

This Lynn team will be joined later this evening in the DR by additional Lynn University staff who are escorting one set of parents of a missing Lynn student, as well as the son of one of the missing faculty members and a close personal friend of that missing faculty member to the country. The university has provided transport, hotel accommodations, and counseling services for these family members at their request, and has also briefed them on the situation on the ground to the best of our ability.

Barring any breaking news, the next update will be posted no later than 10 p.m. this evening.

Media Alert: "Journey for Hope" group photo available

Lynn University is providing the following photo for media use. This photo is believed to have been taken on Monday, Jan. 11, 2010 at a Food for the Poor Haiti Warehouse and Feeding Center. This is a candid photo snapped just before a posed group shot (which has not yet been located). This is the only photo we have at this hour that contains all 14 members of the Lynn "Journey for Hope" group. If additional photos become available, those will be passed along as well.

It is our hope that greater distribution of this photo may aid in identifying and locating the remaining six members of this group. The names of those still unaccounted for are bolded.

Lynn University students at a Food for the Poor facility in Haiti

Lynn University Students In Haiti

L to R: (front row - sitting) Paul Tyska, Lindsay Doran, Nikki Fantauzzi, Richard Bruno, Christine Gianacaci, Daniela Montealegre, Britney Gengel, Stephanie Crispinelli (back row - standing) Patrick Hartwick, Michael DeMatteo, Courtney Hayes, Julie Prudhomme, Thomas Schloemer and Melissa Elliott [High-res]

*Photos of Drs. Hartwick and Bruno are also available on our Web site.

Next update on situation in Haiti, Lynn efforts available at 4 p.m.

Lynn University will update the campus community and the public on any new details regarding the situation in Haiti at 4 p.m. today (Friday). Lynn spokesperson Jason Hughes will be made available to media on campus at 4 p.m. He will also answer questions for media via conference call at 4:30 p.m.

Call details will be provided to credentialed media on Lynn's media list. Journalists wishing to be added to that list should sign-up online with their name, outlet and location.

11:30 update - Lynn rescue efforts focused on Hotel Montana, Dominican Republic posts

As of this hour, separate rescue efforts underway to locate and evacuate four (4) missing Lynn University students and two (2) faculty members are focusing on transfer and holding sites in the Dominican Republic and the Hotel Montana site in Haiti.

Based on details provided by some of the eight (8) students flown home yesterday evening and arriving early this morning in Boca Raton, rescue teams working on Lynn's behalf are focusing additional resources in Haiti on the Hotel Montana site, where Lynn's 14 "Journey of Hope" members were staying during their trip to the country. Student reports indicate that the eight students evacuated overnight were together within minutes of the Tuesday evening earthquake, and stayed together until they were returned to the Lynn campus, and their families and friends, at approximately 12 a.m. this morning. Those student reports indicate that they believe the four missing students and two faculty members were in separate areas within the hotel at the time of the earthquake. Faculty members Patrick Hartwick and Richard Bruno are believed to have been in the fitness center at the time of the quake. The remaining students are thought to have been in their hotel rooms, which were located on the first and second floors of the Hotel Montana.

These reports have also been reinforced this morning by Lynn officials who have spoken with a Food for the Poor representative who was with the group in the Hotel Montana, and is currently in the hospital in the Dominican Republic for injuries sustained in the collapse of at least a portion of the hotel. (Lynn University is not releasing this individual's name at this time.)

Rescue teams that have been on the ground since Wednesday at 2 p.m. are currently focusing much of their efforts at this hour on the Hotel Montana as a result of these reports. Lynn officials have been told that reinforcements and resources are expected today, and may have already arrived, to aid in the search efforts. Additionally, the university is expecting members of a second rescue company (retained by Lynn) to arrive on site today as well.

Efforts in the Dominican Republic continue
Yesterday evening three members of the Lynn staff arrived in the Dominican Republic to meet evacuating students (the 8 accounted for) as well to search for missing students and faculty. Since that time, the three-person team - Chris Boniforti, chief information officer; Sheila Sheppard, associate director of the Center for Global Education and Citizenship; and Anthony Altieri, assistant dean of students - have continued to seek out information regarding those missing individuals, in addition to helping accelerate the evacuation last night of the eight Lynn students to Fort Lauderdale International airport's private terminal.

The group today continues to canvass aid centers, airports, hotels and embassy outposts, among other installations, in the Dominican Republic for news of Lynn's missing students (4) and faculty (2).

Other details

Kevin Ross to address campus at 1 p.m.
Lynn President Kevin Ross is addressing the campus community at 1 p.m. to update students, faculty and staff on the latest details. This briefing will not contain new information, and is not open to the public or media.

Parents, Haiti students unavailable for comment
To respect the privacy of our "Journey for Hope" students and their families, the university continues to refrain from facilitating contact between the families/students and the media.

President Ross unavailable today for individual interviews
Lynn President Kevin Ross is unavailable for interviews with media at this time. He continues to direct the university's various crisis response activities. No exceptions can be granted.

**MEDIA NOTE:
Lynn spokesman Jason Hughes will take questions from on campus media at 11:30 a.m. this morning. A conference call with credentialed press will follow that session at noon.

Next update on situation in Haiti, Lynn efforts available at 11:30 a.m.

Lynn University will update the campus community and the public on any new details regarding the situation in Haiti at 11:30 a.m. today (Friday). Lynn spokesperson Jason Hughes will be made available to media on campus at 11:30 a.m. He will also answer questions for media via conference call at noon.

Call details will be provided to credentialed media on Lynn's media list. Journalists wishing to be added to that list should sign-up online with their name, outlet and location.

Eight students returned to campus; efforts continue to locate remaining students, faculty in Haiti

Eight Lynn University students were returned to South Florida and campus around midnight last night. The group was welcomed back by their parents and families, as well as the university cabinet and members of the Crisis Management Team.

This, in addition to the news reported by President Kevin M. Ross in a press conference on Thursday evening, is the latest information available at this time. When new information emerges regarding the four (4) students and (2) faculty unaccounted for, those details will be communicated via this site. This morning efforts continue in earnest to locate those missing staff and students.

Barring any breaking news, the next update to this site will be made at noon on Friday.

Media Notes:
  • At this time, the eight students who returned to campus on Thursday night/Friday morning are the only students from the 14-member "Journey of Hope - Haiti" team currently accounted for. However, as additional information becomes available that will be shared with the campus community and public at-large.

  • The timeline of alert posts remains as they have been updated at this time to illustrate the manner in which our information and public accounts have changed in recent days.

  • To respect the privacy of our students and their families, the university continues to refrain from facilitating contact between the families or students.

President Kevin M. Ross remarks from 11 p.m. press briefing

Good evening. Thank you for your time this evening. I apologize for the late hour, but we have new news to share with our campus community, and with those whose prayers and thoughts have been with our students and faculty in Haiti since Tuesday evening. And it is news we feel cannot wait.

This morning, just after 9 a.m., we received word that our rescue team in Haiti had secured four of our students at the Hotel Montana, flew them to the Port-au-Prince Airport and had deposited them "at a fixed wing aircraft" for transport to safety. More than 12 hours later, we have been informed by that contractor that they had "bad" intelligence.

At approximately 9:40 p.m. this evening, after a full day spent pressing this group for more details, we were told that Stephanie Crispinelli, Courtney Hayes, and Britney Gengel were not, in fact, ever located. They remain lost. And that is not news, however unpleasant, we intend to let rest another minute.

At this hour, six members of our campus community remain unaccounted for in Haiti. In addition to the three above, we are still desperate for information regarding Christine Gianacaci, as well as our faculty members and friends, Patrick Hartwick and Richard Bruno.

Our search for those missing in Haiti has never ended. And tonight, it continues. The private contractor working on our behalf in Haiti continues its search for our missing loved ones. And this evening, and in the early morning hours ahead, reinforcements are being marshaled to grow their ranks and capabilities. And tomorrow, a separate group fixed on finding and evacuating our community members, will join that effort as well.

This is hard news to deliver. But it is more difficult to hear for those family and friends with whom, only hours earlier, such good news had been shared. I am deeply sorry for that.  

But for me, and for many others, hope is not lost. We will - and must - continue our work to track down these individuals and return them to their families.

Even as I speak tonight, eight other students from the "Journey for Hope" group are on their way back to their families. Their plane is to land shortly. That good event is dampened by this bad turn of events. But I trust, through our efforts and through the prayers of so many people - many of whom we don't even know - we will have another plane landing very soon. That is my wish, and my own prayer.

--

A conference call line will be opened at 11:30 p.m. for any credentialed press with questions.

Call details were provided via our existing media list. Journalists wishing to be added to that list should sign-up online with their name, outlet and location.

 

Lynn University to hold press conference at 11 p.m.

Lynn University spokespersons will address media at 11 p.m. this evening on campus concerning recent developments regarding the search for missing students on the "Journey of Hope - Haiti" academic trip.

A conference call line will be opened at 11:30 p.m. for any credentialed press with questions.

Call details were provided via our existing media list. Journalists wishing to be added to that list should sign-up online with their name, outlet and location.

Eight Lynn students on the ground in the Dominican Republic are identified

The eight (8) Lynn University students headed for the Dominican Republic have arrived, and been identified. The eight students are:

  • Thomas Schloemer
    Fox Point, WI

  • Nikki Fantauzzi
    Simsbury, CT

  • Daniela Montealegre
    Managua, Nicaragua

  • Julie Prudhomme
    East Greenwich, RI

  • Michael DeMatteo
    Southlake, TX

  • Melissa Elliott
    Hartland, WI

  • Lindsay Doran
    Clearwater, FL

  • Paul Tyska
    Wilmette, IL

Three Lynn University staff members, who have also arrived in Santo Domingo, are in the process of meeting up with the group. A return trip to South Florida has not yet been scheduled.

Rescue teams continue to search for Lynn student Christine Gianacaci and faculty members Dr. Patrick Hartwick and Richard Bruno, M.D.

The university will make its next update no later than 10 p.m. this evening.

MEDIA REMINDER/Conference call:  A conference call line will be opened this evening at 6:30 p.m. for any credentialed press with questions. This line is being opened as a courtesy. No new details will be available. Call details were provided via our existing media list. Journalists wishing to be added to that list should sign-up online with their name, outlet and location.

Lynn staff en-route to Dominican Republic to meet 8 Lynn students

As of this briefing, three staff members at Lynn University are preparing to depart for the Dominican Republic to await the arrival of eight (8) Lynn students from the "Journey for Hope" trip to Haiti. The group is expected to depart within the hour.

The team members include a representative from Lynn's Center for Global Education and Citizenship, a member of the dean of students office, and one cabinet member. They are charged with tending to our students when they arrive in the Dominican Republic and preparing to escort them to South Florida via a private jet, which has been provided by an anonymous donor. We currently have no details regarding a possible return time or day.

Dominican Republic is first destination for 8 Lynn students being evacuated

At this hour, Lynn officials can confirm that eight students are being evacuated from Haiti by the U.S. Department of State via plane, en-route to the Dominican Republic. When they arrive they'll be met and escorted home by the Lynn team.

Transportation details for the remaining three students are not yet known, though they're also expected at this time to be flown first to the Dominican Republic.

Three members of community still being sought

A rescue team working on Lynn's behalf is continuing its active search for the three remaining members of Lynn's "Journey for Hope - Haiti" group. No additional details regarding the student and two faculty members are currently known.  

Additional details for media personnel:
Lynn study abroad insurer information
Members of the press seeking additional information regarding Lynn's insurer for students and employees traveling abroad is available via Cultural Insurance Services International. The insurer's "Security Evacuation Benefit Rider (Comprehensive)" is available online.

Lynn cannot arrange contact with families, students

Lynn officials will not facilitate contact with our students in Haiti, nor their families, at this time.

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MEDIA REMINDER:  A conference call for credentialed press will take place at 2:30 p.m. to answer any questions and discuss any new details that may become available. A Lynn University spokesperson will also be made available to journalists on the Lynn campus immediately following that call.

Call details were provided via our existing media list. Journalists wishing to be added to that list should sign-up online.

Next update scheduled for approximately 2 p.m., Q&A; conference call to follow

Barring any new information, Lynn University will post its next update on the status of its students and faculty in Haiti at 2 p.m. today.

If additional details arise prior to that time, that information will be updated here and all media contacts will be informed via e-mail.

Next media conference call at 2:30 p.m.

A conference call for credentialed press will take place at 2:30 p.m. to answer any questions and discuss any new details that may become available. A Lynn University spokesperson will also be made available to journalists on the Lynn campus immediately following that call.

Call details will be provided via our existing media list. Journalists wishing to be added to that list should sign-up with their name, outlet and location.

Four additional Lynn students identified, reported safe this morning

This morning, a rescue team working on behalf of Lynn University is reporting that it has made contact with, and is in the process of evacuating, four (4) additional Lynn students in Haiti. These four are in addition to the seven (7) reported to be with the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince yesterday evening, bringing the total number of Lynn students accounted for to 11.

These four students are being identified as:
  • Melissa Elliott, Hartland, WI
  • Stephanie Crispinelli, Katonah, NY
  • Courtney Hayes, Boca Raton, FL
  • Britney Gengel, Rutland, MA
Evacuation efforts for the 7 students said to be with the U.S. Embassy continue at this hour, as do efforts to make contact with the remaining three members of the Lynn "Journey of Hope - Haiti" trip, which includes the group's two faculty leaders.

No additional details are available at this time.

Morning Update

Lynn University's Crisis Management Team reconvened this morning to discuss the latest updates overnight. At this time, a contractor working on behalf of the university is focused on making physical contact with and evacuating those seven (7) students who were yesterday reported to be with the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince. A separate team is also currently pursuing contact with the remaining seven (7) members of the Lynn University J-Term group.

No additional details are available this morning.

If additional details become available prior to that time, this site - and this list - will be immediately updated.

No additional details emerging this evening, classes resume tomorrow

The Crisis Management Team at Lynn University continues to closely monitor the situation on the ground in Haiti this evening and was heartened to receive news tonight that seven (7) of our students were located and with the US Embassy in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. (See details below.)

As of this briefing, no new information is available. In the absence of new information overnight, the university's next update will be provided no later than 9 a.m. EST Thursday, Jan. 14.

Classes resume Thursday
Lynn University will resume its regular January Term class schedule tomorrow. Counseling services will continue to be offered, as always, to any employees or students in need of them.

**MEDIA NOTE: A sincere thank you to members of the media requesting information regarding our efforts and the status of our students and employees in Haiti. Your patience and concern is appreciated. Due to the volume of calls we are receiving, www.lynn.edu/alert continues to be the best place to receive the latest updates. If credentialed media would like to receive these updates directly as they are posted, please sign up for the e-mail list.

Sixth and seventh Lynn students reported to be with US Embassy

A total of seven (7) Lynn students reported to be with US Embassy

Julie Prudhomme of East Greenwich, RI, and Thomas Schloemer, of Fox Point, WI, Lynn officials have learned, are with the US Embassy in Port-au-Prince. As of now, seven (7) of 12 students on Lynn's January Term trip to Haiti are now accounted for.

For the latest details, visit www.lynn.edu/alert

Update: A total of five students reportedly with US Embassy in Port-au-Prince.

In the last few minutes, the Lynn University Crisis Management Team received word that five parents had received notifications from the Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince. According to those reports, Daniela Montealegre of Managua, Nicaragua; Nikki Fantauzzi of Simsbury, CT; Michael DeMatteo of Southlake, TX; Paul Tyska of Wilmette, IL; and Lindsay Doran of Clearwater, FL are safe and with the embassy.

The university will continue to update the Web site should additional news become available.

A picture of the group (taken on January 7 at Food For The Poor for their travel orientation) is available to download from Flickr.

Lynn University personnel in the picture: (L to R) Daniela Montealegre; Mike DeMatteo; Stephanie Crispinelli; Nikki Fantauzzi; Lindsay Doran; Missy Elliott; Julie Prudhomme; Tom Schloemer; Courtney Hayes; Britney Gengel; PJ Tyska; Rich Bruno

Two additional students are reported to be with the US Embassy

Lynn University has just received word that two additional students with the Students for the Poor group are with the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince.

Those students are Michael DeMatteo of Southlake, TX, and Paul Tyska of Wilmette, IL.

The university will continue to update this site should additional news become available.

Partial group photo taken prior to the trip

Lynn University Haiti Group

(L to R) Daniela Montealegre; Mike DeMatteo; Stephanie Crispinelli; Nikki Fantauzzi; Lindsay Doran; Missy Elliott; Julie Prudhomme; Tom Schloemer; Courtney Hayes; Britney Gengel; PJ Tyska; Rich Bruno [High-res]

Update: Two students reportedly with US Embassy in Port-au-Prince.

In the last few minutes, the Lynn University Crisis Management Team received word that two parents had received notifications from the Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince. According to those reports, Daniela Montealegre of Managua, Nicaragua, and Nikki Fantauzzi of Simsbury, CT, are safe and with the embassy.

More info will be provided as it becomes available.


No New Details

We have no new details regarding the status of our students and employees in Haiti. Sadly, national news reports earlier today stating all 14 university students and faculty had been found in good condition were not correct.

The rescue agency working for Lynn reports that evacuation helicopters left the Dominican Republic late this morning, headed to Haiti on our behalf.

The next Web update and public comment will be at 6 p.m.

11:45 a.m. Update

At 11 a.m. this morning, Lynn University President Kevin M. Ross convened a briefing meeting for members of the campus community where he outlined the university's ongoing activities to acquire more information regarding our 12 students and 2 faculty members currently in Haiti. An estimated 350 members of the campus community - students, faculty and staff - attended the briefing, which was publicized to the campus via Lynn's e-mail, text and phone alert system this morning.

Ross confirmed at the briefing that the university's Crisis Management Team is pursuing "all options and avenues" to acquire information about the group, including working with Food for the Poor contacts on the ground and the contracting, last night, of a group charged with making first contact and providing safe transport to the group.

At the meeting, President Ross also shared news that two members of the campus staff were also in Haiti on personal trips and, as yet, had not been in contact with the university, and identified for the first time the identities of the 12 students on the trip. Those are included below.

  • Thomas Schloemer
    Fox Point, WI

  • Nikki Fantauzzi
    Simsbury, CT

  • Daniela Montealegre
    Managua, Nicaragua

  • Julie Prudhomme
    East Greenwich, RI

  • Michael DeMatteo
    Southlake, TX

  • Melissa Elliott
    Hartland, WI

  • Lindsay Doran
    Clearwater, FL

  • Paul Tyska
    Wilmette, IL

  • Stephanie Crispinelli
    Katonah, NY

  • Christine Gianacaci
    Hopewell, NJ

  • Courtney Hayes
    Boca Raton, FL

  • Britney Gengel
    Rutland, MA

Lynn University faculty leading the trip:
  • Patrick Hartwick, Ed.D., dean of the Ross College of Education
  • Richard Bruno, MD, assistant professor, College of Liberal Education

Additional details will be posted as they become available. At this time, no schedule comments have been set.

10 a.m. Update

Lynn University is currently clarifying details regarding its group of students and faculty currently in Haiti on a January Term trip.  The 12 students and two (2) faculty members were to have been registered and staying in the Hotel Montana yesterday evening.

Despite some early second-hand information regarding the group's conditions and whereabouts, the university's Crisis Management Team continues to try all channels to establish reliable contact, and reliable data regarding the condition and location of our community members in Haiti.

We can confirm at this time the names of the two faculty members on the trip:
  • Dr. Patrick Hartwick, dean of the Ross College of Education at Lynn University
  • Dr. Richard Bruno, assistant professor in the College of Liberal Education
We also have learned that two (2) Lynn staff members are also in the country visiting family. At least one of these individuals is believed to be in the lesser-hit area of the country.
Next update will be immediately following the 11 a.m. campus gathering, though no additional details at this point are expected.

Please refer to previous updates for additional information.

Crisis Management Team at Lynn University reconvened this morning at 8 a.m.

The Crisis Management Team at Lynn University reconvened this morning at 8 a.m. At this point, no new details regarding our 12 students and two (2) faculty have been received. However, this morning the university has confirmed that two of the university's maintenance staff are in Haiti with family at this time, but no information regarding their conditions have been available as of yet.

Lynn University President Kevin M. Ross, along with members of the CM Team, will host an 11 a.m. community meeting for all students, faculty and staff in the campus Green Center. Immediately following this meeting, Lynn spokesman Jason Hughes will be available to press representatives to address any new details that may be available.

Regular academic classes have been suspended for the day beginning with all 11 a.m. January Term courses, though faculty will be reporting to their classrooms during their scheduled class time to meet with and counsel those students who wish to attend. Additionally, the university continues to actively provide campus counseling services to all students requesting them.

In the absence of new information, the university's next update will be provided immediately following the 11 a.m. campus gathering.

An update on Lynn students and faculty in Haiti

Dear members of the Lynn community,

At this time, Lynn University officials are still working to confirm the whereabouts and condition of our 12 students and two faculty members, as well as a Food for the Poor representative, on the J-Term trip to Haiti.

The university's contact with the group occurred through a fellow Lynn student who received word that a portion of the group was accounted for and safe at that time. Since those brief text message communications, the university has received reports from Food for the Poor officials relaying general conditions from the ground.

A private contractor retained by the university is also on the ground at this hour seeking to make physical contact with our students and faculty. This is as much information as the university's Crisis Management Team has at this time. New information will be provided as it becomes available on this page.

-Sent on behalf of the Lynn Crisis Management Team

Lynn continuing to monitor situation, no new details available

Lynn University officials continue to monitor the situation in Haiti. No additional details regarding the status of our students and employees in the country have been verified. Whenever new information becomes available it will be posted to this site.
Updated 8:05 p.m.

Update on Students in Haiti

As of 7 p.m., the university has received reports from a Lynn University student on the ground claiming the safety of a portion of our students currently in Haiti on a Lynn January Term trip.

The university, as well as partner Food for the Poor, are continuing to seek information and will update the university community as soon as new details become available.