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Back to Business

The Berry College campus is getting a makeover as work crews ready the campus for the arrival of friends and family to watch approximately 315 seniors accept their diplomas.

The south end of Evans Hall has been prepared with great care as the site for graduation, and according to current weather forecasts we should have a beautiful Saturday.  Land Resources and Physical Plant staff and students have been toiling non-stop to make sure the celebration for the Class of 2011 is spectacular.

It’s been more than a week since the storms hit Berry with enough force to topple more than 500 trees and damage cottages and campus homes. Saturday’s graduation was moved from Memorial Library because of damage to the grass and the loss of the Graduation Tree (which has been salvaged for future use).

Work crews are also making repairs at the the Child Development Center which is set to reopen Monday (May 9). Structural engineers are still assessing the serious damage to Julia and Dorothy cottages and homes.

Berry also benefited from a student clean-up day last weekend when 192 students, led by staff and faculty team leaders, donned work gloves and safety goggles to help pick up branches and clear areas.  The difference in our campus was remarkable and we are so appreciative of the volunteers.

Dean of Students Debbie Heida noted “within an hour of the storm on Wednesday morning, Berry students were asking how they could help.  Thank you for the spirit of active volunteerism that is one of the hallmarks of the Berry community!  This has certainly been ‘worthwhile work done well’ and more importantly service as an act of love for this incredible place.”

So many people responded so quickly and decisively in so many significant ways that it is difficult to describe the magnitude of the effort.

“It was a shining moment for the Berry community generally, and in particular for staff of the physical plant and grounds crew, land management, campus safety, residence life, and Aramark dining services,” said President Steve Briggs. “What a marvelous job these colleagues have done under difficult circumstances.”

Click on photo for larger image
The Julia Cottage was sliced in half by trees during the storm.
The Julia Cottage was sliced in half by trees during the storm. Structural engineers are assessing the damaged cottages and houses on campus.
The Dorothy Cottage was damaged during the storm. It was built in 1912 with donations from George W. Perkins, a member of the board of trustees, but has not been occupied since 2010.
The Dorothy Cottage was damaged during the storm. It was built in 1912 with donations from George W. Perkins, a member of the board of trustees, but has not been occupied since 2010.
The day of the storm work crews quickly tackled the debris in front of  Morton Hall.
The day of the storm work crews quickly tackled the debris in front of Morton Hall. More than 500 trees fell on the main campus and hundreds more in the wild areas of our 26,000-acre campus.
Several vehicles parked at Lemley Hall were crushed by trees.
Several vehicles parked at Lemley Hall were crushed by trees. Within an hour of the storm, Berry students were asking how they could help. The student cleanup consisted of 192 students led by staff and faculty team leaders.


Oak Hill, the home of Berry College founder Martha Berry, was left untouched by the storm that took down dozens of trees.
Trees fell like dominos around President Steve Briggs’ home, but there was no damage to the structure.
Trees fell like dominos around President Steve Briggs’ home, but there was no damage to the structure.
Saturday’s graduation has  been moved to the Evans Hall lawn from Memorial Library because of damage to the grass.
Saturday’s graduation has been moved to the Evans Hall lawn from Memorial Library because of damage to the grass.
Trees slammed into empty cars, sometimes obscuring them completely.
Trees slammed into empty cars, sometimes obscuring them completely.

Student Taylor Thompson posed with a t-shirt from the Volunteer Campus Cleanup Day.
Student Taylor Thompson posed with a t-shirt from the Volunteer Campus Cleanup Day.
Grounds Crew student workers  removed limbs during cleanup in the log cabin campus area.
Grounds Crew student workers removed limbs during cleanup in the log cabin area.
Berry President Steve Briggs posed with a group of students.
Berry President Steve Briggs posed with a group of students Saturday during the Student Volunteer Cleanup. The log was eventually removed with equipment.
A student from the Grounds Crew removed a tree near the Child Development Center.
A student from the Grounds Crew removed a tree near the Child Development Center. The center was damaged during the storm, but no one was injured.

Students were back in class the day after thanks to  Berry’s fast work crews.
Students were back in class the day after the storm thanks to Berry’s hard-working and fast work crews who worked to clear walkways and roads.
Work crews removed the “Graduation Tree” which was felled during the storm.
Work crews removed the “Graduation Tree” which was felled during the storm. The tree was salvaged for future use.
Assistant Biology Professor Cathy Borer took her class to study the root system of the downed “Graduation Tree.”
Assistant Biology Professor Cathy Borer took her Principals of Microbiology and Botany class to study the root system of the downed “Graduation Tree.”
Berry’s beauty cannot be squashed. Thankfully no one was injured and no academic or residence halls were damaged during the storm.
Berry’s beauty cannot be squashed. Thankfully no one was injured and no academic or residence halls were damaged during the storm.

Land Resources and Physical Plant work crews have been toiling non-stop since the storms.
Land Resources and Physical Plant work crews have been toiling non-stop since the storms.
The Child Development Center is set to reopen Monday (May 9.)
The Child Development Center is set to reopen Monday (May 9).
The south end of Evans Hall has been prepared with great care as the site for graduation.
The south end of Evans Hall has been prepared with great care as the site for graduation.
Approximately 315 seniors are expected to graduate Saturday.
Approximately 315 seniors are expected to graduate Saturday.

Student photographer Mary Claire Stewart contributed. 


 

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