Knox students enjoyed a break from classes this Tuesday and Wednesday after Director of Public Relations Karrie Heartlein sent out an email just after 11 a.m. on Tuesday announcing that the campus would enter into “reduced operations” due to a blizzard.
Most faculty and staff members said that they could not remember a time in the past when Knox has shut down operations due to snow.
“In my 31 years here, I do remember one day in 1999 when we canceled the first day of class since students were not able to get to Knox with flights everywhere being canceled,” Professor of Political Science Sue Hulett said. “I cross-country skied to the office that day.”
In reduced operations, the only parts of the college that stayed open included dining services, facilities and student services, such as the library. Most people tried to stay inside during the storm, though power outages swept most of campus last night from just before 7 p.m. until around 8 p.m.
Many of the roads in Galesburg remain impassable, and Director of Campus Safety John Schlaf said that part of Campus Safety’s additional duty today included picking up other employees, such as those who work in the cafeteria, who would have been unable to get to campus on their own.
“We were happy to help with that,” Schlaf said. In his time here, he could not remember an occasion when Knox had closed when classes were in session.
According to an article in The Register-Mail on Wednesday, “Travel on interstate 74 between Galesburg and Peoria has been restricted. Amtrak has cancelled travel out of Galesburg for today.” Also in that article, Galesburg reported 15 inches of accumulated snowfall by Wednesday.
Many students were pleased about the two-day closure.
“I think it’s great,” senior Krista Ahlberg said of the snow day. “It’s what a lot of people needed…just a winter Flunk Day and a chance to return to the innocence of our childhoods. It is a welcome break, and it has been an awesome bonding experience for the campus.”
Senior Katie Johnston disagreed.
“It’s all right,” Johnston said. “Kind of inconvenient because I had sh*t to do.”
A quote from Professor of Psychology Frank McAndrew’s Facebook page read, “Knox is closing for two days because of a blizzard; unprecedented in the two centuries that I have been here.”
Classes are scheduled to resume and offices are set to re-open Thursday.