The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Students embrace snow but not attending classes

By Rema Atiya/se news editor

James Roth, Daniel Markgrat and Toyo Adebays enjoy a picturesque, snow-blanketed game of football on SE Campus Thursday as a record 12 inches of snow fell throughout the day. Students used the rare opportunity to engage in snowball fights and build snowmen on all TCC campuses before they were shut down early.
Corban LaFon/The Collegian

Students on TCC campuses still had to show up for classes Thursday even though a thick blanket of white snow covered the ground outside.

The SE Campus parking lots, usually so full that people have to wait for parking spots to open, were more than half-empty Thursday.

“My mom had to drive me to school today because the roads were too dangerous,” said Kila Wallace, a SE student. “The roads were not even being plowed down by the city, and the melted slush from the snow was just standing in the middle of the roadways, making it harder to drive.”

The decision to close the campuses down at 3 p.m. happened four hours earlier. Morning and early afternoon classes were still held.

“The key thing was that at 11 a.m. on Thursday, we were only expecting three to four

TCC employees were out in full force on all campuses attempting to keep walkways clear.
Casey Holder/The Collegian

inches of snow,” said Dr. Bill Lace, interim vice chancellor of administrative and community services. “We certainly did not expect 10 to 12 inches of snow.”

The school was to reopen at noon Friday. However, early Friday morning, Interim Chancellor Erma Johnson Hadley made the decision with the help of campus deans, police and maintenance workers to shut down the campuses for the entire weekend, Lace said.

“We were expecting a lot higher temperatures and a lot less snow,” Lace said. “The decision was made because of the amount of snow still on the ground, how icy the campus parking lots were and that campus police and maintenance were reporting broken tree limbs from the snow, and it was decided to close campuses for the weekend to clean up the parking lots.”

Lace said that the health and safety of students and faculty are always on the minds of administrators. However, some students said they were baffled by the decision to hold classes Thursday.

“Last year, classes were canceled for just a little bit of ice on the roads,” Wallace said. “I

Melissa Burton quickly puts a snowball together before friends attempt retaliation on NE Campus.
Casey Holder/The Collegian

think it is dumb and backwards to keep the school open when there is a foot of snow on the roads outside.”

It took most students at least an extra 10 to 15 minutes to get to school because of road conditions.

“My mom drove me to school today, and she was pissed because it was snowing and I still had class,” said Misa Shabaneh, a SE student. “Even my sister’s high school was closed down, and it is only five minutes away from this campus.”

Some students who attended classes felt they were placed in hazardous situations having to drive to school.

“They should have closed the school in my opinion,” said Ryan Osborne, a SE student. “It puts students and teachers at risk with dangerous conditions.”

Randy Wesley hurls a few more snowballs at friends before running off to class on NE Campus.

Some students said they felt obligated to attend classes because reviews and tests were scheduled.

“I had an accounting test I was hoping to miss,” said Michael Nutt, a SE student. “If I didn’t have a test today, I would not have come to school because it is dangerous outside, and there was a good chance of getting into a wreck.”

In some cases, students showed up only to find out that their teachers did not show up, causing classes to be canceled.

“I was not so much angry about coming to school in the snow,” said Noor Amiera, a SE student. “I was mad I came to school for a seminar that was canceled, and it was so bad outside that I skid in my car three times and almost spun in a circle for some extra credit I’m not even going to receive now.”

Most teachers post on their Web sites when classes are canceled, but some students said this did not happen Thursday.

“Yeah, I am mad because it turns out one of my classes was closed, and I made a trip up here for nothing,” Osborne said. “It kind of sucks that some classes were canceled, and they didn’t even inform the students. And if the teachers cannot drive up here, then why should we?”

Firefighters receiving training on NW Campus refuse to let Thursday’s record snowfall hamper their exercises. All TCC campuses including the fire training center were open for business until administrators decided to shut down at 3 p.m.
Allison Dooley/The Collegian

Lace said despite the conditions, people should attend school when campuses are open.

“If the college is open, students and teachers are expected to be in attendance,” Lace said.

One student who pointed out the high number of absences on campus questioned whether it was the best decision for the students.

“I’m surprised about the whole situation of TCC staying open in this kind of weather,” said Monique Hawkins, a SE student. “Kids and teachers are not even showing up for class today because of how dangerous it was outside.”

Because of Thursday’s decision, some students were concerned that this would set a precedent when bad weather happens again.

“My life is more important than trying to drive to school on dangerous roads like I had to today,” Shabaneh said.

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