Walden University's Student Services Reach Out to Disaster Victims

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As disaster strikes in Minneapolis and Southern California, Walden University reaches out to students and faculty in affected areas.

In August, the bridge over Interstate 35W collapsed in Minneapolis. In October, wildfires ravaged Southern California. In both instances, Walden University's student services teams, as well as other Walden and Laureate Education staff, reached out to students and faculty in the affected areas.

In both disasters, the first order of business was to ensure that everyone was physically safe -- members of the Walden community were spared from harm, and none lost a home in the fires.

During the wildfires, academic advisors worked with students in the Southern California area and their faculty members to ensure that academic deadlines were not an added stressor while the fires continued to damage their communities and impact traffic, services and air quality.

Students also responded with concern for the losses their neighbors and friends were facing, and with appreciation for Walden's support and for its understanding of the complex lives of working professionals. This kind of personal concern for community is important to everyone across the Walden organization.

"We understand the importance of helping our students balance their education with the many other aspects of their lives," said Walden President Jonathan A. Kaplan, J.D. "Therefore, our staff is constantly working to anticipate, accommodate, and help our students adjust to the impact of crises beyond their control -- whether those events are personal or communitywide in scale. In addition, our student services teams, along with the rest of the Walden community, knows that our mission is to make a difference not only in the lives of our students, but also in the community at large."

Once assured that students and employees were safe, Walden and Laureate responded to both disasters with efforts to assist the victims. In Minneapolis, student services coordinated employee contributions through the United Way to the Minnesota Helps-Bridge Disaster Fund. Including a matching donation from The Sylvan/Laureate Foundation, the total contribution made by Laureate and Walden employees was close to $5,000, which went to medical treatment, counseling and other needs related to the bridge collapse. And in California, Walden's Los Angeles office held a blood drive to support the needs of the American Red Cross.

For more information about Walden University and their services, visit http://www.WaldenU.edu.

About Walden University:
Since 1970, Walden University has offered working professionals the opportunity to earn advanced degrees through distance learning. Today, this comprehensive, accredited online university offers master's and doctoral degrees in education, psychology, management, public policy and administration, and health and human services -- as well as master's programs in engineering and IT and bachelor's completion programs in business. Walden University is a member of the Laureate International Universities network, the largest global network of accredited campus-based and online universities.

Walden University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association, http://www.ncahlc.org ; 312-263-0456.

Ana Sanchez
Walden University
Minneapolis, MN

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