Tulane to study long-term impact of Katrina

Researchers with Tulane University will study the long-term impact of Hurricane Katrina under a $6.7 million grant awarded by the National Institutes of Health, the university announced.

A multiple-university network of researchers will study the lasting health, demographic and socioeconomic impacts of the storm on New Orleans and the broader region.

Mark VanLandingham, principal investigator for the study, and Thomas C. Keller, a professor of global community health and behavioral sciences at Tulane, said the team will gauge whether trauma or resiliency exhibited in the storm’s aftermath still persists.

By studying how different populations have reacted, researchers hope to create a portrait showing where various Katrina survivors stand now.

“There are very few studies that look at the long-term consequences of a major event like Katrina because it’s so difficult and complicated,” VanLandingham said. “We’re interested in who came back to the city, who didn’t and why.”

The five-year grant will establish the Tulane Center for Studies on Displaced Populations. Data will be collected for two years.

VanLandingham will work with David Abramson, of New York University, and Mary Waters, of Harvard.

UNO institute gets interim director

The University of New Orleans has appointed Robert Penick, senior vice president of Latter & Blum Companies, as interim director of the Institute for Economic Development and Real Estate Research.

Penick succeeds Ivan Miestchovich, the institute’s longtime director, who died in September.

The institute provides technical assistance and applied research throughout the region in the areas of economic development and real estate. It produces an annual real estate market analysis for the New Orleans metropolitan region and the north shore. It also presents the Ivan Miestchovich Economic Outlook and Real Estate Forecast Seminars.

In addition to his job as senior vice president, Penick serves as chief financial officer for Latter & Blum. He also is an adjunct professor of finance at UNO, teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in real estate principles and real estate finance.

Penick has a bachelor’s degree in finance and an MBA from Loyola University; a master’s degree in supervision and administration from Our Lady of Holy Cross College; and a master’s in urban studies and a doctorate in urban studies, with a concentration in real estate and real estate ethics, from UNO. He holds an insurance license from the state.

Delgado to hold open house in Desire-Florida

The recently opened Delgado Community College Sidney Collier site in the Desire-Florida area of New Orleans will hold an open house from 4 to 7 p.m. Thursday. Community members may tour the facility at 3727 Louisa St. and meet with faculty and students.

Spring classes will begin Jan. 16.

Visitors will learn about some of the college’s most in-demand offerings, such as air conditioning and refrigeration, architecture design, barbering/cosmetology, carpentry, civil and construction management, computer-aided drafting and design, electrical, practical nursing and general studies.

The $21 million site offers programs that have never before been available to residents in that part of the city and region. It replaced the former Louisiana Technical College Sidney Collier campus that was devastated during Hurricane Katrina and subsequently demolished.

The campus became part of Delgado in April 2010, when Louisiana Technical College Region One merged with Delgado. Before Katrina, Sidney Collier’s enrollment approached 1,000 students, the highest of all Region One campuses.

High school students can take advantage of dual enrollment at Delgado.

Prospective students may visit www.dcc.edu or phone (504) 941-8500.