The concepts of Risk Management, Emergency Management, and Business Continuity are interrelated and often concurrent. The three concepts can be thought of as being on a continuum:
- Risk Management identifies, assesses, and mitigates risks;
- Emergency Management addresses management of emergency response;
- Business Continuity addresses resumption of normal operations during and after emergency response.
Starting in 2010, the campus Risk Management Committee was formed. Representatives from Public Safety, Campus Planning & Facilities, Environmental Health & Safety, Human Resources, Financial Operations, the Information Technology division, and the Academic Division comprise the membership of the campus Risk Management Committee. Risk Management is the primary driving force for several of these departments, and at least partly so for others. Also starting in 2010, the Campus Risk Management Plan was developed. This plan identifies/assesses campus risks, lists existing/potential mitigation controls for each risk, and provides mechanisms for ongoing risk communication and monitoring.
Emergency Management is a Risk Mitigation Control. Emergency Management, however, is a large enough that is often is placed in its own category. The Lehman College Emergency Operations Plan (EOP) was first developed in 2012. Although specific emergency procedures are contained within the EOP, its overall purpose is to provide written policies and procedures to manage an emergency situation. The EOP is guided by the principles of the Incident Command System (ICS), a universal system of emergency management employed by all emergency-management entities. The policies and procedures of the EOP are designed to be scalable, the scope of the emergency response determined by the scope and the specific and changing nature of the emergency.
Fallout from major emergencies is twofold: responding to the emergency itself and establishing alternate arrangements to return to normal business operations that have been disrupted. The primary business of any college/university is the education of students; all other activities at a college/university support this business. Business Continuity Planning evolves out of both Risk Management and Emergency Management. The first iteration of the campus Business Continuity Plan addresses issues of alternate classroom locations, course scheduling, student financial services and registration.