On Monday morning, classes were canceled at Binghamton University until noon due to excessive snowfall.
At 5:21 a.m., BU students received a B-ALERT notifying them of the cancellation of classes on Monday. Binghamton experienced four to six inches of snow, according to the National Weather Service, accumulating overnight and persisting lightly throughout the morning, prompting unsafe travel. The B-ALERT stated that faculty would notify students if they were to be holding classes remotely throughout the morning. OCCT buses were set to begin running at 10 a.m.
Ryan Yarosh, senior director of media and public relations at BU, shared the steps that had been taken before making the decision to cancel classes.
“It’s a team process, as representatives from about a dozen departments, including [the New York State] University Police and Physical Facilities, gathered to assess conditions and also consider detailed National Weather Service forecast information,” Yarosh wrote in an email.
Classes were canceled until noon, but snow continued to impact campus throughout the rest of the day. A power outage at the East Gym caused an early closing at 4 p.m., reopening on Tuesday at 2 p.m. Ground crews continued to work throughout the day to make sure walkways on campus were safe for students and staff. According to BingUNews, BU still utilizes certain services during snowfall that are crucial for students and maintenance of buildings, or services that support necessary research programs.
Yarosh said safety was of “top priority” for the University as it responded to the weather.
“The ground crews took action immediately, plowing and clearing roads and sidewalks,” Yarosh wrote in an email.
Many students were seen making the most of the partial snow day. An Instagram post from the University featured a pair of students skiing and snowboarding down the hills of Mountainview College, while other students reported seeing a statue of Karl Marx outside of Hughes Hall in Hinman College.
Serena Chan, a sophomore majoring in integrative neuroscience, said she enjoyed the time off and credited the cancellation to students that commute to campus.
“Classes were canceled till 12 [p.m.], and I had one Zoom class, so I just stayed in bed listening to it,” Chan said. “I’m pretty glad that they canceled classes because it was a nice surprise to wake up in the morning and see the email. I think they did it because a lot of people live off campus. I live in Hillside and the hill to walk downward is dangerous, and I remember the first day of classes when it was icy, a lot of people were falling.”
Others, like Samin Rahman, a junior majoring in biochemistry, had classes after noon. Rahman said he still enjoyed being able to head to campus later than he typically would.
“That gave me more time to prepare for my classes that were later on in the day,” Rahman said. “I would say it was generally beneficial considering I live off campus and there was a lot of snow. It was a positive decision in regard to off-campus students coming on campus for classes.”
Over the rest of this week, it is expected that Binghamton will get about 9.58 inches of snow, as predicted by Weather 25. According to the Weather 25 website, a total of 22 snowy days will have occurred throughout January by the end of the month.