Hurricane Ida’s displaced Colonels


Photo by Chantz Haviland

While most students were only able to complain about power outages, there were many students that lost their homes. According to Nicholls Housing Director Alex Coad, there were approximately 10 percent out of the 4,500 students who responded to the survey that they were displaced. 

Among these displaced students were people living in the Acadia Villas apartment complex in Thibodaux. By Sept.15, all residents had to move out of the damaged complex. 

Former resident Brooke Laborde, a junior nursing major from St. Rose, was very anxious upon receiving the eviction notice. Laborde resided in Acadia for over two and a half years before Hurricane Ida, and she never expected to move out in this manner. 

Laborde was able to receive temporary housing from Nicholls, but she still feels very distressed. 

“It feels so awful to know that you have nowhere to go,” Laborde said. 

Not only were the Villas severely damaged, but so were the Thibodaux Bayou Reserve apartments. Mold was covering many ceilings and debris surrounded the apartments, yet residents did not have to leave. 

Allison Price, freshman Interdisciplinary Studies major from Houma, had only lived in the apartment for 2 months before Hurricane Ida. Although her apartment was littered with mold, Price was unable to receive any financial assistance, even from FEMA, who told her that the apartment was still livable. 

There were also many students that suffered damages to their homes. Many students are living in homes with tarped roofs and torn siding. Luckily, there were also students that were able to find shelter outside of Nicholls. 

Chantz Haviland, sophomore Secondary History Education major from Cut Off, came back from evacuation to find his roof completely off of his house, amongst other various damages to his property. Haviland and his family are still waiting on word of compensation from their insurance whilst living in a house that relatives were trying to sell. 

“I am very positive and being with friends at school has definitely helped distract me from [the problems at] home,” Haviland reported. 

Emilie Berger, freshman Secondary English Education major from Thibodaux, also had significant damages to her house and yard. The pecan tree in her backyard completely uprooted and destroyed her back patio. The wind also caused various shingles to fly off of the roof and create water damage. Their insurance company was able to provide compensation. 

“We are staying at our family’s house until our house is done [with repairs],” Berger said. 

Nicholls Housing responded by giving temporary access to on-campus shelter. It currently costs $18.45 daily to live in Brady’s temporary housing, and this cost includes Internet access, a bed, and a kitchen/living room area. Students that are unable to pay this fee can qualify for sponsorship from various donors.