As of Aug. 1, Don Van Eynde, professor of management, took on the role of interim crisis management team chair, following Steven Bachrachâ€™s leave. Don Van Eynde will lead the team until Bachrachâ€™s return.
â€œManagement is his gig,â€ said David Tuttle, vice president for student affairs and dean of students. â€œHe has been great at role modeling. He interviewed the people on the committee, found out what their goals were and where there may be issues of concern or confusion.â€
Van Eynde, to faculty and other team members, is a perfect fit for the position, with extensive leadership and management skills under his belt.
â€œFor any one who knows him it would not surprise them to know that his organization and management and leadership are all top notch,â€ Tuttle said.
The crisis management team is comprised of various groups, with a core group of eight individuals, including Tuttle and Van Eynde, an auxiliary team of seven individuals, the executive policy group and others, depending on the circumstance.
â€œThe core team is comprised of eight people and then there is an auxiliary group with seven more, and the executive policy group, the president and vice presidents,â€ said Van Eynde. â€œThere are also many others involved from ResLife staff to Counseling and Health Services depending on the crisis.â€
According to Van Eynde, the Crisis Management Teamâ€™s mission statement and aim is â€œto prevent, mitigate, prepare for and respond to crisis/disaster situations in a manner that preserves life and property, minimizes chaos and allows for timely recovery of operations.â€
The crises can range from storms and floods to data breaches or other various threats, which, to Van Eynde, forces the team to be ready for anything.
â€œBasically the job of the crisis management team is to deal with crises of various types, windstorms, tornadoes, floods, pandemics, loss of communications, pretty serious things,â€ Van Eynde said. â€œYou never know what could be involved in a crisis, what exactly could happenâ€¦thatâ€™s the nature of crises, the nature of disastersâ€.
As chair of the team, Van Eynde has various responsibilities, from leading the team to advising and involving the executive group.
â€œThe chair works closely with the emergency management coordinator,during the planning and operational phases of crisis management,â€ Van Eynde said. â€œIt is also my job to inform and involve the executive group as necessary.â€
With meetings every month, the Crisis Management Team is set to respond to various disasters.
â€œWe do training exercises every month, and if there is an actual emergency, we respond and come together as a team and finally we continue to manage that through the recovery phase,â€ Van Eynde said. â€œItâ€™s not only getting through the actual crisis but trying to get things back to normal.â€
Although many students are unaware of the CMTs presence on campus, many students see them as an essential part of the university.
â€œI think a lot of what they do we donâ€™t see as students,â€ said David Warga, junior history major. â€œLuckily weâ€™ve never had a major incident, but itâ€™s comforting to know that they are ready to respond and manage [a crisis].â€
Although the team is prepared for various situations, their ultimate hope is not to be needed.
â€œThe hope is that we will never be needed, but if we do, we want to respond well,â€ Van Eynde said.
â€œLuckily we have had almost nothing at Trinity and the few times weâ€™ve had ice or things like that, things get done a lot behind the scenes and get done well.â€