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College working to assist 48 students displaced by fire at Lattimore Hall

DATE: 09-12-2013

A stove-top fire in a student room Monday afternoon at Lattimore Hall on Genesee Street in Auburn led to the displacement of 47 Cayuga Community College students. Nearly half of the suites suffered significant water damage from the automatic sprinkler system and will need to undergo extensive renovations before students can return to these accommodations, which will take months.

Lattimore Hall, a privately owned and managed apartment building in downtown Auburn, currently houses approximately 90 Cayuga Community College students, many of whom are from out of the area. Lattimore Hall Owner Paul Cappuccilli of Camex Management Group LLC arranged alternate housing for the students affected by the fire through Thursday morning at the Holiday Inn in Auburn.

“We are grateful for the quick work of the Auburn Fire Department and the management of Lattimore Hall whose actions prevented injuries to any of our students,” said College Vice President of Student Affairs Jeff Rosenthal. “The safety and well-being of our students are our top priority, and our immediate concern is ensuring that those affected have their fundamental needs—food, clothing, and accommodations—met.”

The College is working to find new housing for all the affected students. A small number, perhaps 6 to 8 students, will be accommodated by utilizing additional rooms within the Residence Director’s apartment within Lattimore Hall. Wells College has generously offered to house an additional 23 students, and Cayuga officials are working on arranging transportation to and from campus for them.

College officials are developing a list of available housing for the remaining students. Staff members are reaching out to each affected student individually, and displaced students were invited to a meeting with Lattimore and College officials Wednesday to get their questions answered and concerns heard.

Students’ questions ranged from concerns over basic needs, logistics, and when they will be able to recover their belongings from the damaged rooms to more complicated questions about how the change in accommodations will affect their financial aid or how this disruption will affect their ability to attend classes and complete academic coursework.

“We want to assure these students and their families we will do all that we can to support them in this unsettling time,” Rosenthal said.

The College wishes to express its thanks to Wells College, the Holiday Inn, First Student, Auburn City Fire Department, and Paul Cappuccilli and Camex Management Group for their willingness to help the College and its students.

Anyone willing to house students in their homes are encouraged to call the College at 315-255-1743, ext. 2499.