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Emergency Management in Technology: Academic Programs Promoting Community Resilience, Disaster Readiness, and Recovery

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2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


Virtual On line

Publication Date

June 22, 2020

Start Date

June 22, 2020

End Date

June 26, 2021

Conference Session

Community Engagement Division Technical Session 6

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Community Engagement Division

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Jessica L. Murphy Ph.D. Jackson State University

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Dr. Jessica L. (Buck) Murphy is Professor of Technology and the Program Coordinator of the Technology Education Masters Degree Program in the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering and Industrial Systems &; Technology (under the College of Science Engineering, and Technology). Dr. Murphy joined Jackson State University’s Department of Technology in August 2006 as an Assistant Professor. She was assigned to advise the Technology Management undergraduate concentration of the Industrial Technology Program and earned graduate faculty status in Fall 2006. In 2008, Dr. Murphy assumed the role of the Technology Education Master’s Degree Program Coordinator; assisting the program to increase enrollment from approximately 30 students to around 70+ students (to date). Other responsibilities for Dr. Murphy as Program Coordinator include meeting with incoming graduate students, advising students, coordinating service-learning projects for students, and engaging students in research endeavors. Dr. Murphy was promoted to full professor in 2016.

Dr. Murphy serves as Co-Principal Investigator on two grants sponsored by the United States Department of Homeland. The purpose of these grants is to establish undergraduate programs in Emergency Management Technology, developing more Emergency Management Practitioners. Dr. Murphy serves as Program Recruiter for the undergraduate Emergency Management Technology Program, and she is the scholarship reviewer from the program. In addition to her role as faculty, Dr. Murphy serves as the advisor for the Jackson State chapters of ATMAE (Association of Technology Management and Applied Engineering) and EPT (Epsilon Pi Tau Technology Honor Society, Delta Beta Chapter).
On the national level, Dr. Murphy was pointed by the Epsilon Pi Tau International Office as the Region II Trustee for the Delta Beta Chapter. She was elected as the President of the Research Division of the National Association of Technology (NAIT-now ATMAE) (2007). In 2010, she was elected as Vice-President of the Student Division for ATMAE and President of the Student Division in 2012. Also, she serves at a reviewer for the International Association of Journals and Conferences.
Dr. Murphy earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Industrial Technology from Alcorn State University, Masters of Science in Technology from Mississippi State University, and a Doctor of Philosophy in Technology with an emphasis in Education (Community College Administration Minor) from Mississippi State University.

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Dawn Bishop McLin jackson state university

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Abstract: The vision of the Center for Community Resilience (CCR) is to equip Mississippi and our neighboring underserved communities with contemporary skills for better preparedness for natural disasters and man-made disasters occurring after natural disasters (e.g., auto accidents, looting, etc.) to minimize loss of life and property; thus, building resilient communities. The CCR’s mission is to provide contemporary emergency/disaster management and preparedness education and training related to natural disasters (i.e., weather and atmospheric events) for local, state, and neighboring states; to building a pipeline between secondary and higher education that develops future Emergency/Disaster Management specialists, Meteorologists/Atmospheric Scientists and Psychologists; and to mitigate loss through effective preparedness and response planning. In addition to natural disasters, the CCR will provide public safety response training in lieu of man-made disasters that may occur during or after a natural disaster/major weather event, specifically for underserved populations.

Underserved Populations: Underserved populations, also called “at-risk” populations, are those that are particularly “at risk of poor physical, psychological, or social health” before or after a disaster. For the purposes of this project, the CCR defines underserved populations as disabled persons, elderly, lower socio-economically categorized persons, limited English to non-English speaking persons, and etc. Overall, underserved communities entail those communities lacking sufficient resources and the ability to mitigate and/or properly prepare in lieu of forecasted disasters.

Problem Statement: According to an article published in News Mississippi (Ulmer, 2014), Mississippi is 7th on a list of ten for the likelihood of natural disasters. As explained by Meteorologist, Steve Wilkinson, the probability of natural disasters in Mississippi is very high as the climate and location supports the formation of severe and sometimes devastating storms. Mr. Wilkinson further indicated that, Mississippi is in “tornado belt” and that Mississippi is along the Gulf Coast which is impacted by hurricanes. In 2019, tornadoes and flooding plagued Mississippi. According to WLBT News, Gov. Phil Bryant announced that President Donald Trump declared Clarke, Clay, Itawamba, Kemper, Monroe, Oktibbeha, Warren and Yazoo Counties as federal disaster areas in June (Lee, 2019). This declaration resulted from severe storms, winds, tornadoes and flooding that surged through Mississippi on April 13th and 14th. As of August 2019, Mississippi is still resiliently recovering from flooding with eight counties begin declared federal disaster areas (MEMA News, 2019). According to an “Ag Fax” article, 20 of the 82 Mississippi counties are “designated natural disaster areas”. How can Mississippians better prepare and respond to current and forth-coming disasters and further mitigate loss of life and property?

Solution: Regarding Community Resilience (CR); the CCR’s goal is to assist the State of Mississippi and its local and neighboring communities to create a culture of preparedness. Through efficient and effective preparedness, the CCR will serve as one of the leading entities ensuring that Mississippians have the capacity to recover quickly from incidents, especially underserved communities. Moreover, the CCR will assist local Emergency Management specialists, educators, public-private organizations and underserved communities with the ability to mitigate, prepare, respond, recover more successfully bounce back from adverse weather-related events. This will be accomplished by the following:

1) Community training and outreach (targeting the under-served communities and vulnerable populations) a. Collaborate with National Weather Service to provide general information on weather safety and education (events will be designed according to MS weather season) b. Visit with area schools to inform about careers in Emergency Management, Meteorology, and Crisis and Disaster Counseling c. Host additional community-based workshops and events 2) Educational training for First Responders, Emergency Specialists (public and private sector), and other Emergency Management specialists and those in related disciplines a. Conduct Virtual Reality Simulation Training and Table-Top Interactive Activities b. Provide Continuing Education Units (CEUs) and Certificate/Certification Training i. Emergency Preparedness for Natural Disasters ii. Community Disaster Resilience Training iii. Behavioral and Emotional Disaster Response iv. Communication of Emergency Alerts and Notification (reaching multi-generations) 1. Traditional 2. Contemporary (Social Media) 3) Generation Next: Discipline Awareness and Workforce Building (developing the next generation of Emergency Management specialists, Meteorologists/Atmospheric Scientists, and Psychologists and Social Scientists who build emotional resilience after disaster strikes a. Visit area schools to explain the aforementioned disciplines, degree and professional requirements, and career and salary projections b. Host annual summer camps for middle and/or high school students c. Develop Teen-Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT) (with CERT training as a part of the summer camp) 4) Research Endeavors a. Conduct quantitative, qualitative, mixed, etc. research to aid Emergency professionals in “lessons learned” to improve response and recovery efforts b. Provide research results with CCR partners to aid in more effective preparedness initiatives

Murphy, J. L., & McLin, D. B. (2020, June), Emergency Management in Technology: Academic Programs Promoting Community Resilience, Disaster Readiness, and Recovery Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--34522

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