University Cancels Classes and Implements Snow Days


Courtesy of @novanationer Instagram page

University Cancels Classes and Implements Snow Days

Katie Reed, Staff Writer

On Sunday, Jan. 31, snow began to fall on campus in the afternoon but continued at a steady pace into the night. Villanova students who were tracking the weather and took notice of the winter storm warning waited eagerly for classes to be canceled the next day, resulting in the first snow day of the year. At 5:18 a.m., students received a Nova-alert via text or email notifying them that classes, both in-person and online, would be canceled on Monday, Feb. 1, making snow day wishes a reality.

However, it didn’t stop there. At 5:21 a.m. on Tuesday morning, classes in all modalities were once again canceled, and by the end of the day, the University was coated in a blanket of approximately nine inches of snow.

With an extended, four-day-long weekend on campus, students found plenty of ways to spend free time. They had the opportunity to get some extra rest, catch up on their work, and most importantly, spend time outdoors with friends in the snow.  Several snowmen and other snow sculptures popped up all over campus, and many students took to the nearest hill they could find to do some sledding. Students were creative in their endeavors, using miscellaneous items such as baking trays, laundry baskets, and Rubbermaid storage containers as their sleds.  

For Mikala Sheats, a sophomore from Danville, California, it was her first time experiencing a winter storm.

“I really liked waking up and seeing everything covered in snow and seeing all the snowmen and igloos people made around campus,” Sheats said.  

She also enjoyed getting to have a couple of days off from classes, which she spent having snowball fights, building a snowman of her own, and spending lots of time outdoors.

“It was fun to be on Main Campus; it seemed like people were relaxing a bit from the stress of school,” Sheats said. “There were a lot of people sledding and making snowmen, so it seemed like a lot of people were enjoying the snow.”

However, students were not the only ones who got to take a couple of days off from classes. Similarly, faculty from the University were also able to enjoy the two snow days. Allyson Volinsky Levin, a Visiting Assistant Teaching Professor in the Department of Communication, was also experiencing her first winter storm during her time on campus since she started here in the fall of 2019.  

“My favorite snow day activity these days is looking out the window with a cup of coffee and watching the city [Philadelphia] become blanketed by the snow,” Levin said, who grew up with snow days throughout her life. “It’s absolutely stunning, especially when the snow is fresh and the city is quiet.”  

She also enjoys cooking and baking in her free time, which are some of her go-to snow day activities.

Though snow days are all fun and games, they have the potential to interrupt the semester and derail plans, especially during the already uncertain nature of classes during the pandemic.

“Snow days can be disruptive academically, but we’ve all had to be very flexible and adaptive these days, so I think we are very equipped to respond quickly and make sure that we’re safe but still accomplishing what needs to get done,” Levin said. 

 It is the hard work and dedication of faculty members like Levin that will ensure students stay on track for the rest of the semester. The snow days offered both faculty and students alike a small reprieve from the stress of balancing classes with the rising COVID-19 cases, so hopefully, everyone was able to take advantage of that and stay safe.