After settling into new room assignments and returning to Matteson, students are likely to adjust quickly to campus life, attending classes and everyday undergraduate life, he said, but timing will be individual and some adjustments may take longer.
For instance, some students, especially those in closer proximity to the fire, may not have realized fully the impact of the incident, Perry said, and the campus counseling and residence life staff will be on alert to help and provide emotional and other support.
Also, though roommates on the third floor of Matteson were able to stay together in dormitory reassignments, the floor’s suite communities were lost, Perry said.
SUNY Oneonta staff have been focused in the past week on the urgency of resolving housing questions, Perry said, and their effort was enhanced by college employees, students and faculty who volunteered to help for such tasks as escorting students to restricted areas.
The college’s cleaning staff worked many hours of overtime to expedite the recovery, he said. The night of the fire, students showed support for peers by providing clothes and toiletries, he said.
Perry said the cleanup went faster than he anticipated, and the Holiday Inn was “very good to work with through the whole situation.’’ In the weeks ahead, the college staff also will continue its review of the incident and response, Perry said.
“It’s really been a team effort, a community effort,’’ Perry said. “We’re slowly getting back to normal.’’
Staff, students, alumni, faculty and the local community also have shown support by donating $2,308 to the Matteson Hall Fire Fund, said Paul Adamo, vice president for college advancement and executive director of the College Foundation. The tax-deductible contributions will support students’ academic needs, such as paying for textbooks or computer software, he said.
“We are grateful for all of these gifts,’’ Adamo said. “And I’m sure our students are also.’’