As winter months move in, a daily battle arises in the lives of
some students at CSU – the extended morning in a warm bed versus
the long chilly walk to class.
Some students fight to and get to class; some hit the snooze
button and pull the blankets back over themselves.
“I have definitely started to notice in my larger classes that
less people are coming,” said Erin Parks, a freshman apparel
merchandising major. “Sometimes I can’t make it, but I don’t have a
bike or a car so I have to walk everywhere.”
Some students will try and offer their teachers weather as a
legitimate excuse not to come to class.
“Weather definitely plays a part in (the absences), especially
on Mondays and Fridays,” said Tina Wilson, a lecturer in the speech
communication department. “I did have one girl in a class who
basically told me if it snows at all she wouldn’t be in class.”
Some teachers note that any change in the weather can seemingly
give students a rationale to skip class.
“Weather and day of the week are probably two of the main
factors for students skipping,” said David Sampson, associate
professor in the food sciences and human nutrition department. “But
as a corollary, when we start getting warm weather in the spring
we’ll see a similar drop in attendance.”
Sampson also said that the lower-level classes taught in the
larger lecture halls are more likely to be skipped by students. He
notices this in a class he teaches in Clark A-101.
“The weather personally doesn’t really affect me, but I can
definitely see how it would some people,” said Kyle Sullivan,
freshman forestry major. “I imagine some people get Seasonal
Affective Disorder and may go to class less.”
SAD is the onset of depression-like conditions associated with
the winter months and patients are usually exposed to
high-intensity light as treatment, according the Diagnostic and
Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.
“I don’t know that college students would be particularly prone
to this disease, but it’s not uncommon for us to have more students
come in for help around this time of year,” said Susan MacQuiddy, a
licensed psychologist at the University Counseling Center. “As
October moves through, we’ll notice that things just start to get
more stressful for students.”
Chris Smith, a sophomore attending Colorado Mountain College in
Breckenridge, was on campus Friday.
“As far as class and weather goes, I have a nine-inch rule for
myself. If any of the resorts in (Summit County) get 9 inches of
snow or more, I’m up skiing.”