As students celebrated the first class cancellation in seven years this morning, some faculty and staff were apparently a little agitated.
In a release, administrators apologized for not issuing a delay and cancellation sooner. The university first issued a two-hour delay at 6:45 a.m., a mere hour and 15 minutes before classes were set to begin. As for the cancellation? Faculty, staff, and students were only alerted via PSU Alert that classes and campus activities were cancelled at 9:03 a.m. — less than an hour before classes were set to resume.
As many faculty and staff members travel great distances to get to campus along with the countless students who live on the outskirts of downtown State College or commute, canceling classes at the last minute caused quite a stir.
“Our protocol for campus delays or cancellations generally works well, but we were caught off guard Wednesday by icy conditions of walkways and the parking lots on campus — since exterior roadways (which we also monitor) appeared to be in good shape,” said David Gray, senior vice president for Finance and Business/Treasurer in the release. “We do send notice as soon as a decision is made and we apologize for the inconvenient timing of the PSU Alert message. We are keenly aware of those who drive a distance to come to work and attend classes, and we always hope we are able to catch individuals before they embark on their trip.
“We missed the mark and our hope is that we can do better next time,” he added in the release.
Although administrators had to make a quick decision in this case, there should be a protocol for deciding on cancellations and delays by a certain time. Leaving less than ample time for students, faculty, and staff to react to the news of a cancellation makes days like these more difficult for everyone.