Students offer advice to prepare for Kent weather

Shamira Fowler

Incoming students should be wary of the unpredictable weather during winter months

Students attending Kent State University are familiar with the phrase “lake effect” and its consequences. It’s the term used to describe snow produced in the winter when cold winds move across long expanses of warmer lake water.

“Bring a scarf and definitely a good pair of boots,” senior mathematics major Andrew Vanek warned incoming students.

Winter in Kent can prove to be a difficult experience for some students, especially when walking to class. Timothy Shepherd, junior justice studies major, said it is important for students to start preparing for the winter before the first frost hits.

“You need to make sure you bring your winter jacket up to Kent in September,” Shepherd said.

Caitria Clark, junior speech pathology major, said students should make keeping their hands and head warm a top priority in the chilly fall and winter


“Bring multiple pairs of gloves because people tend to lose them,” she said.

Catherine Hace, junior sports administration major,

recommends layers.

“You always want to layer,” she said. “It’s cold outside and hot in the classrooms in the winter and hot outside and cold in the classrooms in the summer.”

Students walking to class during the bitter winter season may literally stumble into campus areas that tend to be more difficult to get across than others on the windy days. Many students refer to the area between the library and the Student Center as the “wind tunnel.”

“Any area by the library will not allow you to make any forward progress,” Vanek said. “I mean, the wind just swirls.”

Shepherd suggests students also avoid the large hill by Taylor Hall and the May 4 Memorial. He said this area is a “disaster waiting to happen ” during winter.

He also warned students about other slippery areas.

“Those funky bricks (imbedded in the sidewalk) are slippery when they’re wet,” Shepherd said.

Vanek said although students may not be able to avoid slippery bricks during the rain, it is still important to bring an umbrella. He believes the quality of the umbrella is just as important as its function.

“If you use an umbrella, it has to be a good one,” Vanek said. “The travel ones will break.”

While the infamous wind tunnel and rainy days may hinder walks to class, Vanek said he believes it is still possible for students to get to their classes on time if they make the proper arrangements.

“You want to fit in an extra five minutes in the wintertime to get to class,” Vanek said.

Hace said she encourages incoming students to take advantage of university-provided services that inform users that classes have been canceled because of bad weather.

“Sign up for FlashAlerts because they send you text messages for snow days,” Hace said.

Informational text messages may be helpful for many students, but Shepherd said despite preparations, Kent weather can only be described as “unpredictable.”

“You never know what’s going to happen,” he said.

Contact minority affairs reporter Shamira Fowler at [email protected].