Nov 092003
Authors: Chris Kampfe

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.”





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