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Emma Cowles said hurricane Ida wasn’t a cause for concern until it strengthened into a category 4 storm. The Ridgefield native was in New Orleans preparing for an admissions test for graduate school days before Ida made landfall on the gulf coast.
Cowles, 21, has lived in New Orleans for the past four years while attending Tulane University as an undergrad. In 2020, the city experienced one of the worst hurricane seasons on record, she said, which was “inconvenient yet manageable,” she said.