On Tuesday, Jan. 28, temperatures in Albion reached a frigid four degrees Fahrenheit and dropped to negative 10.
Schools like The University of Michigan, Eastern Michigan University and Washtenaw Community College were closed due to severe weather. Concerns over long walks, extended waiting times for busses and hazardous roads contributed to these schools’ decisions to close.
Although this was the first time The University of Michigan closed on account of extreme weather since 1978, according to The Michigan Daily, Albion remained open. Classes were held and business carried on as usual for the Brits.
“Michael Proppe, CSG president, said he believes the dangerous conditions Tuesday warranted the historic measure,” stated The Michigan Daily.
Albion is a 45-minute drive from Ann Arbor and judging by the temperatures recorded, it is safe to say Albion experienced similar “dangerous conditions.”
Many students were confused or frustrated that class schedules remained untouched. Some tweeted at the school, stating their frustration. Talk buzzed on campus about the cold and other schools’ canceled classes.
“The conversations I had today varied with intensity, from exchanges interjected with mumbled swearing to astonished exclamations of, ‘Can you believe how cold it is?’” said Alex Kuligowski, South Lyon sophomore. “It’s safe to say we were all displeased with the fact we had school.”
The University of Michigan put out multiple documents explaining their decision to close.
Kenneth Snyder, director of campus safety, stressed that the safety of Albion’s students and faculty was not threatened. He explained that students have the ability to make it across campus in 10 minutes or less while it takes 15 to 30 minutes for frostbite to begin affecting exposed skin, according to the National Weather Service.
“We constantly monitor weather conditions and evaluate their potential impact on our campus community,” Snyder said.
Mike Frandsen, interim president, sent the Albion College community an email on Tuesday addressing his thoughts on the matter. He asked students to use common sense when bearing the cold and to wear jackets, gloves and other winter weather apparel.
“This means that now is probably not the time to be sledding down the hill in Victory Park,” Frandsen stated.
Even though it was cold here too, the Albion staff was confident in their decision to keep the doors open.
“I think people were safe to be walking today as long as they used common sense and dressed for the weather,” Snyder said.
Students, although seemingly disgruntled by their missed shot at a day off of school, accepted why campus was not closed.
“Although I was unhappy with the decision that classes weren’t cancelled, I understood why,” Kuligowski said. “We’re a small school.”
Photo via Wikimedia Commons