Florence Stalls College Life in the South

Bianca Miccolis ’21

Features Editor and Web Editor

While the Holy Cross community experienced some unpleasant weather last week, the sun shined again over campus in time for Saturday’s win against Yale on Fitton Field.  However, colleges and universities throughout the South, specifically the Carolinas, were not been so lucky and continued to get slammed by Tropical Depression Florence. Many colleges cancelled classes, closed their dining halls, and closed for most business throughout North and South Carolina, as well as some parts of Virginia.  Some students have evacuated while others remain on campus and wait out the storm. Nonetheless, schools are taking the necessary precautions in order to keep their students and communities safe.

Florence hit the Carolinas’ coast Last Friday, September 14.  By Sunday, Florence had flooded many cities in North and South Carolina and caused the evacuation and displacement of residents from their homes as well as vast power outages.  According to The New York Times, 15,000 North Carolinians and 4,000 South Carolinians find themselves in shelters due to flooding. Florence had expected winds of 35 miles per hour as well as rainfall of two to three inches per hour in North Carolina.  Regrettably, 14 have died as a result of Florence from falling trees and flash flooding. National Weather Service alerts were in effect in all of North Carolina’s counties and flash-flood warnings continued into Monday.

These conditions have important effects on college campuses in the Carolinas and the rest of the South.  For one thing, Florence has impacted the college football schedule, even affecting some Northern schools.  After playing Holy Cross, Boston College traveled to Wake Forest earlier than anticipated to play their game before the impending storm last Thursday night.  Additionally, some games have been canceled or postponed while others have been moved to different locations. UCF-North Carolina, West Virginia-N.C. State, East Carolina-Virginia Tech and South Carolina-Marshall were canceled and Elon-William and Mary was postponed with no reschedule date.

Not only was college football affected, but general school life was also impacted.  In North Carolina, East Carolina University, UNC-Wilmington and Fayetteville State University shut down their campuses and sent students home.  In South Carolina, the College of Charleston closed on Tuesday, September 11. Elon University closed on Thursday, September 13, but students could stay on campus if they chose to.  While students remained on campus, modified dining hall hours went into effect and power outages impacted the campus. Students living in Sloan Hall felt the effects of the power loss as they had difficulty accessing their dorms on Friday.  The building’s card readers could not detect the access card; thus, the doors would not unlock and students found themselves stuck outside. While confined to an almost-empty campus, students did homework, watched Netflix, and played video games.  The remaining students reported that they were incredibly bored during closure; however, campus reopened and classes resumed on Tuesday, September 18.

As we close our fourth week of classes, Holy Cross students may be wishing that we, too, had a five-day break from school work, activities, and various obligations.  However, most students would agree that going to class beats sitting in the dorms or walking to Kimball in several inches of rain.

Photo Courtesy of Elon University

Categories: features

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