UPDATE: September 1, 6:30 p.m.
The National Weather Service issued a tropical storm watch for Polk County at 11 a.m. Sunday. A tropical storm watch means that tropical storm force winds (39 to 57 mph) are possible within the next 48 hours.
August 31, 11 a.m.
The National Hurricane Center’s 11 a.m. update shifts the projected track of Hurricane Dorian further east, putting the Florida Southern College campus out of the cone.
According to the Florida Southern website, the College “will continue to monitor the strength and track of Hurricane Dorian and will communicate any changes to the College’s operations as we receive additional information about the storm.”
Staff is being asked to adhere to their normal work schedules for Monday, Sept. 2.
August 31, 9:15 a.m.
The Office of Student Development sent out a text message to all students regarding the possible movement into a designated campus shelter, if deemed necessary by College officials.
Read the full message here:
August 30, 8:30p.m.
As of the 8 p.m. National Hurricane Center advisory, Dorian has become a Category 4 storm with maximum sustained winds of 125 mph.
They have warned residents that there is “possibility of hurricane-force winds over inland portions of the Florida peninsula.”
August 30, 5 p.m.
Hurricane Dorian has become a Category 3 storm, following the National Hurricane Center’s 5 p.m. advisory.
Florida Southern will still be holding their chapel service at 11 a.m. in the Fannin Center, there will be free breakfast provided.
The Mocapellas have cancelled “Open ‘Moc’ Night” that was scheduled for tonight at 7 p.m.
August 29, 11p.m.
Hurricane Dorian has intensified to a Category 2 storm, as of The National Hurricane Center’s 11 p.m. advisory. Maximum sustained winds have reached 105 mph and are projected to further increase overnight.
August 29, 1:30 p.m.
Jillian Kurtz spoke with Vice President of Finance and Administration, Terry Dennis regarding the cancellation of classes.
August 29, 12:30 p.m.
Florida Southern announced on their website that classes will be cancelled on Monday, Sept. 2 and Tuesday, Sept. 3 due to the potential impact of Hurricane Dorian.
This cancellation includes online and graduate classes. Normal college operations will remain for the faculty and staff. Classes are scheduled to resume normal operations on Wednesday, Sept. 4.
August 28, 2 p.m.
Hurricane Dorian is being predicted to make landfall on Central Florida by Sunday, according to the National Hurricane Center.
The college administration is aware and will be communicating with students if further precautions should be put in place.
“Facilities ordered extra quantity of sandbags in the case of heavy rains,” Vice President of Finance and Administration Terry Dennis said. “I have a hurricane update on my monitor.”
The storm comes with threats of hurricane conditions, storm surge and high winds as it passes over Puerto Rico, gains strength over the Atlantic Ocean and heads towards Florida within the next 48 hours. On Tuesday, the storm passed through the eastern Caribbean islands maintaining winds around 50 miles an hour.
In the Florida Southern Emergency Action Plan (EAP), it is stated that “in the event of a hurricane, it may become necessary to set up a command post within one of the residence halls designed for hurricane force winds.”
As of Tuesday night, it is “too early to tell the status of classes” on Friday or Monday, according to Eric Rauch, head of safety and security.
In prepardeness, students should move all furniture away from windows and electronic equiptment should be unplugged from electrical sockets. In the event of a power outage, it is advised that students charge their devices and backup chargers.
Hurricane Dorian threatens Florida Southern just two years after Hurricane Irma. Students were forced to evacuate the campus, but it is not expected that this measure will be taken regarding the upcoming storm this weekend.