By Arianna Cecchini
Students at CCSU were surprised when they found out that President Obama would be speaking on Wednesday. But what surprised and frustrated many students is that classes were not cancelled during the commander-in-chief’s speech.
Professors were left to make their own decision on whether or not their classes would still meet. The professors were not all on the same page on the issue of class cancellation. Due to the already numerous snow days, some professors cannot bear to lose any more class time.
“I would certainly not blame anyone who had a ticket for choosing the President over my class, but would it be worth canceling the class for those few–especially given the toll snow days have taken already?” said Brian Folkner, an English professor.
Some professors agreed, but in a survey that included approximately 20 CCSU professors, from multiple departments, the majority decided to hold class. There were a few exceptions, including one professor who had a ticket to the speech. Some professors said that if only a handful of students had tickets out of their 35-person classes, it would not affect them in the slightest.
Many professors said that students would not be penalized for going to Obama’s speech, but would have to make up the missed work, but a few professors utilized the event to their advantage. For example Professor Ritzenhoff, a communications professor, had her class active inside and outside of the event.
“I want my students to cover the event for our course with their video cameras … conduct interviews, find interesting behind-the-scenes stories, and follow the complicated logistics of this sensational news event,” she said.
A visit from the president sparked concerns from CCSU residents and commuters about parking and traffic.
“CCSU already has a lot closed and parking is already a mess. With two lots closed on Wednesday, and the public coming to the school, where are students going to park?” said Adam Paradis. He was not the only commuter concerned about this, it was the dominant theme on social media and across campus.
Many students who live on campus wanted classes cancelled because they did not want to go to class. Whether professors cancelled or not, many students avoided campus and took a day off.