NIU professor reports on devastation he’s seen in Kathmandu

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KATHMANDU -- A Northern Illinois University professor from Naperville was in Nepal when the deadly earthquake hit.

Mark Rosenbaum is teaching in Kathmandu as a Fulbright Scholar.

He credits a warning saved his life. It meant that when the massive 7.8 magnitude quake came over the weekend, he wasn’t panicked. He just grabbed what he could and he ran.

His Kathmandu apartment wasn’t leveled, but it was badly damaged. It wasn’t safe to stay. Fortunately, the State Department, which oversees the Fulbright program Rosenbaum is a part of, quickly found him new accommodations nearby.

The local infrastructure is still intact. Mark has power, although not all the time.

But there’s one big concern, even in the most modern parts of the country - water. The hotel complex he’s in now only has a three day supply.

In the next 48 hours, he should learn if there’ll be enough water to sustain him or if it’s time to come home to Naperville. In the meantime, the moment the quake hit still runs through his mind.

“Interestingly enough, the U.S. embassy had warned all Americans when we arrived back in January with the Fulbright Program, that there was a high risk potential for an earthquake,” Mark told WGN News via Skype.

Mark says his hope is to stay in Nepal and to keep the commitment he made to teach there.

He’s not scheduled to return until June.

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