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American Students In Haiti Found Safe

Compiled By Yaffa Klugerman
January 14, 2010

Many American college students present in Haiti during Tuesday's devastating earthquake have been accounted for, but a number of institutions are still waiting to hear from students who remain missing.

The Palm Beach Post reports that as of this morning, 11 out of 12 students from Florida's Lynn University have been found safe, while two faculty members have yet to be located. The group was in Haiti on a weeklong humanitarian mission and arrived just hours before the earthquake took place, causing their hotel in Port au Prince to collapse. School officials said that they had hired a private rescue service to fly into Haiti in helicopters to locate the group.

Joan Prudhomme, a mother of one of the Lynn students, noted that the university reacted swiftly to the disaster. "Lynn University brought all their resources to bear, got special clearances to land in Haiti," she told the Palm Beach Post. "First thing yesterday, they had teams on the ground."

As of this morning, the University of Florida was also still attempting to reach two students in Haiti who were working on a documentary there. WSVN 7 News reports that both were staying at an orphanage in Port-Au-Prince.

"We're trying to reach out to the students as well as their family and so are the folks in the Dean of Students Office," said Steve Orlando, a spokesman for UF who was quoted by WSVN. "So we're trying as hard as we can to find out if these folks are OK."

Meanwhile, Fox News reports that four faculty and staff members from the University of Notre Dame in Indiana have been found safe in Haiti, along with a student who had been participating in a service program sponsored by the University of Miami.

"We are thankful that these dedicated members of the Notre Dame family are safe," said Rev. John Jenkins, Notre Dame's president, in a statement. "Our prayers are with them and all of those in Haiti in the wake of the disaster."

Two separate groups of students from the University of Wisconsin-Madison who are in Haiti were also found unharmed, the school announced yesterday. The first group was traveling with the organization Engineers Without Borders, and the second group was in the country as part of the Milwaukee-based Haiti project.

"We're very thankful that all of our students are unharmed, and wish them a safe return," said Dean of Students Lori Berquam. "But we recognize how lucky we are and send our thoughts and prayers to the people of Haiti as they cope with this unthinkable catastrophe."

Other schools that have received word of faculty and students safe in Haiti include Taylor University in Indiana, Blue Ridge Community College in Virginia and Virginia Tech.

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