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Feb-12-2010 19:57printcommentsVideo

Haiti University Memorial

Of some 1,500 schools visited to date in the worst hit areas of Haiti, only 85 had escaped severe damage from the earthquake, which is estimated to have killed some 200,000 people, injured many others and left 2 million in need of aid.

Haiti University students at memorial
Photo/Video courtesy: United Nations/MINUSTAH

(PORT-AU-PRINCE / SALEM) - Students, parents and university officials struggled with their emotions as they returned to what was left of the University of Port-au-Prince to mourn the 150 students who lost their lives in last month’s earthquake.

Jean Rene Destin is a student there, "If the university had to reopen it would be a struggle for me to go back. I haven't only lost comrades, but also teachers and my father."

But some school officials want to look ahead and try to maintain some sense of normalcy.

Serge Luc Bernard, Chairman of the Board of Directors, said, "We need to find any means of reopening the university. And this should be handled seriously. Half-term exams are ahead of us."

But before that, students say they will need both financial and emotional help.

Samuel Saintonge is also a student, "Students will need to undergo psychological assistance, and we will need scholarships as well."

UNESCO, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, has launched a public appeal for donations to help re-establish the education system in the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere.

Of some 1,500 schools visited to date in the worst hit areas of Haiti, only 85 had escaped severe damage from the earthquake, which is estimated to have killed some 200,000 people, injured many others and left 2 million in need of aid.

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Tim King is a former U.S. Marine with twenty years of experience on the west coast as a television news producer, photojournalist, reporter and assignment editor. In addition to his role as a war correspondent, this Los Angeles native serves as Salem-News.com's Executive News Editor. Tim spent the winter of 2006/07 covering the war in Afghanistan, and he was in Iraq over the summer of 2008, reporting from the war while embedded with both the U.S. Army and the Marines. Tim holds numerous awards for reporting, photography, writing and editing, including the Oregon AP Award for Spot News Photographer of the Year (2004), first place Electronic Media Award in Spot News, Las Vegas, (1998), Oregon AP Cooperation Award (1991); and several others including the 2005 Red Cross Good Neighborhood Award for reporting. Serving the community in very real terms, Salem-News.com is the nation's only truly independent high traffic news Website. You can send Tim an email at this address: newsroom@salem-news.com




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