Rebuilding New Orleans
Brandon Kreiling admits that as a Midwesterner, he initially found it hard to comprehend why the city of New Orleans wanted to rebuild after Hurricane Katrina. Now that he's visited The Big Easy three times and witnessed the devastation Katrina left behind, he understands.
Kreiling, a graduate assistant, and 11 other faculty and students in the Department of Construction Systems have spent the past year designing floor plans and writing construction manuals that builders will use to build or renovate homes in New Orleans' Esplanade Ridge neighborhood.
In early 2006 the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development awarded the University of Nebraska-Lincoln a $293,660 grant to participate in the Universities Rebuilding America Partnership. The program is a partnership between the Charles W. Durham School of Architectural Engineering & Construction, HUD and the Catholic Archdiocese of New Orleans. Fifteen other schools also are participating.
Kreiling, a 2000 graduate, was working for HearthStone Homes in Omaha when Professor James Goedert recruited him for the project. Kreiling said his first trip to New Orleans confirmed that returning to school was the right decision. Hearing New Orleanians' stories also convinced him it was necessary to rebuild the once-majestic city.
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