Sea Aggies Run Aground in College Station

By: Kristen Ross Email
By: Kristen Ross Email

Hundreds of Sea Aggies are testing out the waters here in College Station.

More than 1,700 students from Texas A&M Galveston have been displaced by Hurricane Ike.
Now, just a little more than a week after the storm, Sea Aggies are getting ready to re-start the school year at Texas A&M's main campus.

It's not the first time A&M has opened its doors to displaced college students. In 2005, after Hurricane Katrina struck, Texas A&M took in more than 150 students, mostly coming from either Tulane or Loyola.

This time, however, it's much different. Texas A&M has invited the entire Galveston campus to finish out the semester in College Station, while both the city and campus rebuild.

"We get to have two first days of school in one semester," A&M Galveston Student Body President Mike Spiers said. "It's pretty interesting and hectic at the same time."

Hundreds of Sea Aggies are now getting their feet out of the water and testing out their land legs in College Station.

"We're trying to keep all the class sections intact, that was part of our goal," Karen Bigley with Texas A&M Galveston said. "We, of course, have some professors or instructors who won't be able to come due to their own catastrophic loss, but whenever possible we've kept them with all the same instructors and classmates."

But there'll still be a few differences for Galveston Ags to get used to...

Here, the biggest open body of water is a fountain. The clanking of corps boots is the norm across campus, and nearly 50,000 students call the College Station campus home, compared to the roughly 2,000 students at Galveston.

"We're at a school where you can walk from one side of the campus to the other in less than five minutes, so it's a little different," Spiers said.

"It's bigger here, there's a lot more people," Galveston Student Taylor Cannetti said.

Taylor Cannetti, and Tyler Cullaver are just two of the hundreds of Galveston students getting a fresh start to their freshman year of college.

"They're getting ID's, they're getting passes for parking, they're getting housing assignments and just being welcomed to Aggieland," Bigley said.

Although there is still a lot of worry about everything they've left behind...

"Our stuff is either going to be molded, gone, or hopefully ok," Tyler Cullavar said.

For Tyler, this experience has a happy ending.

"I've been wanting to go here in the first place," Cullavar said. "I've been wanting to transfer, so I'll learn a lot here."

Registration for Galveston-based Aggies continues Tuesday, and classes begin on Wednesday.

As of right now, nearly 1,500 Sea Aggies are planning to finish out the semester in B/CS.

Those unable to attend classes in College Station, will have this semester's tuition credited to their next semester's tuition in Galveston.

A&M Galveston officials say the campus there sustained only minor damage from Hurricane Ike.
They plan to have that campus back up and running by January.

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