Students disappointed snow didn’t freeze classes for the day


Rob Le Cates

Students eagerly refreshed their inboxes awaiting the desired “class is canceled” email after seeing a snowstorm Wednesday morning. Devin Melvin (right) a freshman accounting major, trudges through the snow on his way to class wearing a makeshift gator mask using a blue T-shirt in between Klehm and Lumpkin Hall. Classes were not canceled due to last week’s average temperature hanging around the upper 30s.

Rob Le Cates, Photo Editor

Eastern students woke up disappointed after seeing a snowstorm that didn’t cancel classes this morning.

Eastern’s Provost, Jay Gatrell, said he felt the storm system didn’t warrant the cancellation of classes because temperatures were above freezing for the past week, so the salt and brine solutions, that the grounds crew had laid the day before, would clear any debris so students can go to classes.

In addition to the precautionary measures taken, the provost said he drives throughout the community and nearby neighborhoods in the early morning to determine if road conditions are safe for colleges and students.

While sidewalks and roads remained somewhat clear, students didn’t like getting out of bed to face the elements on their way to class.

Honora Reed, a freshman nursing major, trudged through the piles of snow and slush and took cover in Booth Library on her way to class. She said she likes the cold weather, but not cold feet.

She had already been to the Physical Science Building once for chemistry, but she had to make a second trip there for her psychology class.

Reed said this type of snow is walkable, but she wouldn’t be seen driving in this weather.

“I can see why they didn’t cancel classes,” Reed said. “It’s not too bad. A couple more inches could’ve maybe gotten them canceled.”

Devin Melvin, a freshman accounting major, wore a makeshift gator mask using a blue T-shirt to keep the snow out of his face on his way to class. He said he kept refreshing his D2L, hoping his professors would cancel their classes.

“I’m very annoyed, I honestly was checking back waiting for an email to say you don’t gotta go to class,” Melvin said. “I’m still mad because my shoes got wet.”

Julie Chadd, a professor in the teaching, learning, and foundations department, said winter is not her favorite season, and she hates the snow.

Chadd said she would prefer to be hot rather than cold because the cold is wet and messy.

Temperatures remained above freezing all last week with an average temperature of 38.2 degrees Fahrenheit, an average low of 32 degrees, and an average high of 42.6 degrees Fahrenheit.

Based on the past 30 years of data from the National Weather Service, January gets around 6.2 inches of snow on average, with an estimated total of 19 inches per year. 

Eastern climatologist and geography professor Cameron Craig said Illinois is facing below-average snowfall this year because of warmer temperatures due to climate change. 

At 3 p.m. Charleston received around 2.5 inches of snow, according to the on-campus National Weather Service Coop station run by Craig.

Tonight there is a 30% chance of precipitation before 10 p.m., with a possibility of snow and flurries extending into the night and early morning tomorrow. Temperatures are expected to drop to around 24 degrees Fahrenheit tonight, which brings a potential threat of the melted snow freezing, according to the NWS website

Melting will most likely occur tonight and continue into tomorrow. Craig speculated roadways and walkways will progressively become less hazardous come tomorrow.

Tomorrow there is a 20% chance of snow before noon with a high of around 27 degrees Fahrenheit. Tomorrow night there will be a low of around 19 degrees Fahrenheit, according to the NWS

Friday will have a chance of sprinkles and flurries between 1 and 3 p.m. with a high of around 38 degrees Fahrenheit. Friday night there will be a low of around 28 degrees Fahrenheit.


Rob Le Cates is a sophomore journalism major and can be reached at 581-2912 or [email protected].