![MDC staffers clean up fallen debris at North Campus.] (//cdn.coverstand.com/12704/457024/article_assets/6dec03653d15c5eae39f08af1b7ae3bb2525f9a5.jpg) The 2017 Atlantic hurricane season produced more than one catastrophic storm, and while Miami Dade College led relief efforts in the wake of several recent natural disasters, it was Hurricane Irma that tested MDC’s own strength. From its exemplary Emergency Operations Center (EOC), MDC guided preparation for the storm and recovery efforts afterward as it conferred with other agencies and authorities. The College’s resilience proved to be brightest in the dark days without power that followed the storm. The team at MDC started regional efforts by creating mutual aid locations and staging areas for numerous police and fire departments on its campuses to help first responders serve all of South Florida and bring supplies to those who needed them most. In addition to broader efforts, the college community came together to help each other. After an expeditious team effort to remove debris and assess damage to get the campuses operational, the College reopened and provided many resources for students and employees, such as hot meals and battery and cell phone charging stations. MDC also extended the hours of the Wolfson Shark Pantry to provide assistance to students who needed non-perishable goods. – BC
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