Facing Increasingly Frequent Storms of Wind, Rain, Fire – and Bullets

Facing Increasingly Frequent Storms of Wind, Rain, Fire – and Bullets

Sometimes a particular season takes on a character of its own. Often we don’t notice until years or decades later that phenomena such as Freedom Summer (1964) and the Summer of Love (1967)—though they also may be traced to identifiable human causes—seemed simply to emerge out of the air. Today, I write after a horrible few weeks […]

Helping Rebuild New Orleans after Hurricane has Changed Residents – and Me

It all started with a hammer. Actually, it all started with THE hammer. In August 2005, Hurricane Katrina ripped through New Orleans leaving nothing but endless flooding, destroyed homes, lost lives and displaced families throughout the United States. A year later, 10 graduate students from UCF’s DeVos Sports Business Management program, director Richard Lapchick and […]

The Lost Wonder of Being Outside, Running Free and Exploring

As I write this, I am sitting outside in 90-degree heat after Hurricane Irma swept through our beautiful state and left millions without power. I am forced outside, seeking a breeze, but I have found a certain peace, as well. I live in rural east Orange County and am surrounded by green forests and pasture […]

Should I Stay or Should I Go? A Disaster Researcher's Personal Dilemma

I am a disaster researcher. I study the social processes by which communities work in building resilience to emergency events, particularly natural disasters. But earlier this month when the possibility of Hurricane Irma striking Central Florida was becoming real, I also became part of the unfolding event. Gov. Rick Scott declared a state of emergency […]