QU’s hypocritical snow policy is unacceptable

Heather Telesca

Within the last three months, Quinnipiac University released its new policy regarding inclement winter weather. The official statement from Lynn Bushnell was released on December 5 on the QU Daily Web site.

Being a current MAT student, it is my understanding that a school’s number one priority should be its students. That is what I have learned from my Quinnipiac University professors. Now tell me, does Quinnipiac’s new winter weather policy reflect these teachings? I think not.

The university’s new policy states they will “remain open under adverse weather conditions.” As I sit here at my computer typing this article, I have searched for the synonyms for “adverse.” They are as follows: “unfavorable,” “unpleasant,” “difficult” and “harmful.” Those words speak for themselves.

From now on, “cancellation and closing information will only be carried by the following university-affiliated media and resources: AM 1220 WQUN, www.quinnipiac.edu; QU Daily e-mails, the Quinnipiac weather phone, 203-582-8989, and The Chronicle, the university’s student newspaper, at www.quchronicle.com.”

Answer me this: Quinnipiac, what happens when a student lives at home, with no internet access and their teacher, personally, cancels class via the internet? Did you assume all Quinnipiac students have internet access? You know what they say about assuming.

Furthermore, if professors decide to have class during inclement weather, and students are not able to get to class, what kind of repercussions do we face? A grade deduction just because we made a responsible decision regarding the dangerous weather conditions? I mean, as QU Daily reported, “It is ultimately the responsibility of the individual to determine whether travel is safe to and from the campus.” If this is the case, I’d like an excused absence. No questions asked, no lowered grades and no other repercussions. Period.

In addition, how dare Quinnipiac University put the lives of their tuition paying (currently $23,360.that is living off-campus) students’ health at risk? We pay a lot of money to attend this private university where there is no required amount of school days. Of course I want to get the most for my money, but I sure as hell do not want to lose my life while doing it. This whole policy is ludicrous.

In the QU Daily article, it stated that “many [students] reside on campus.” (QU Daily) Hey Quinnipiac, this may have been true four years ago when I, a senior now, was a freshman. These days, housing problems force even more students to live off-campus. Students in their sophomore year have been forced to find off-campus housing due to overcrowding. While the housing crisis is another issue in itself, it is just one example of how concerned Quinnipiac is with money rather than its students.

On Thursday, March 2, 2006, the snow started falling at approximately 10 a.m. By the time I left class at 10:45, the roads were already covered with half an inch of snow. Needless to say, I had some difficulty leaving campus and driving back to my off-campus apartment. As the snow continued to fall steadily, Quinnipiac did nothing. Meanwhile, my roommates had to leave our house in hazardous driving conditions. I sat in my room typing this article listening to numerous ambulances siren drive by on Whitney Avenue. I can’t imagine why that would be. I also find it amusing that all shuttle services were cancelled for the day. If it is too dangerous for shuttles to run, why would it be acceptable for us to drive in snow? When is Quinnipiac going to take into consideration ethical concerns? When will their conscience get to them? Time will certainly tell.