June 1 marked the start of the Atlantic hurricane season. Hurricanes not only affect coastal communities, but hurricanes can also have a significant impact several miles inland, potentially impacting Central Florida.
Here are some ways to get prepared for the 2023 hurricane season and learn more about Valencia College’s communication efforts if a hurricane arises.
- Staying informed
If severe weather approaches Central Florida, Valencia College’s public safety officials will strive to provide a timely warning. The West Campus Security Office will serve as the college’s Emergency Operations Center to coordinate critical services.
The public is advised to monitor the local news and the college’s website. Students, faculty, and staff are advised to also monitor their Valencia College email for updates.
Alerts, updates, and information will also be released through the Valencia College Safety App.
- Home preparation
It is essential to be prepared for the effects of a hurricane. Being prepared means having your own food, water and other supplies to last for several days. A disaster supply kit is a collection of basic items your household may need in the event of an emergency. View a recommended list of items needed in an emergency kit here.
- Know your risk
Learn how you can develop a plan, receive emergency alerts from the city and/or county, how to evacuate and where to evacuate. To learn hurricane terms and more ways to prepare, click here.
- Lean on your community
Here is a list of resources available to the public in the event a hurricane hits.
If your car is damaged by flooding from a hurricane, remember that Valencia College students, faculty and staff can ride Lynx for free by just showing their Valencia ID.
Call United Way’s 211 hotline for help in a crisis. 211 can direct you to housing resources, food, clothing, and emotional support. You can access 211 by phone, email, chat, or text (just text your zip code to 898-211). Reaching out will get you connected to a multilingual 211 specialist in your area who can put you in touch with local organizations that provide critical services.
If a hurricane causes power loss or spoils all your food, you may be able to pick up food from Second Harvest Food Bank’s community partners.
If your internet is out or you need a place to study, don’t forget about Orange and Osceola County public libraries.
Stressed out and struggling to cope after the hurricane? Baycare Student Services provides free, confidential phone counseling 24-7 to Valencia College students.