Ice storm hinders finals
Friday, January 18, 2008
By Guest Writer
Ice storms cut power at Oklahoma Christian University as students
prepared for the last week of the fall 2007 semester. Finals were
moved, and the Oklahoma Christian Administration and IT Services worked
hard to make the week go as smoothly as possible.
When the storm hit on Dec. 10 at 6 a.m., Oklahoma Christian’s
administration was making preparations for the necessary changes in
“We knew that we would be starting late, and we had, on Sunday
night, sent out communication,” Vice President for Academic Affairs
Allison Garrett said.
Crews worked through the night to keep the campus mobile, but the
icy conditions created too much potential danger. Power went out on
Monday morning leaving the academic buildings and student apartments
“The problem was that our sub-station took on some severe damage,
our representative just tried to keep us informed, there were some
fears that the power could have been off for several days,” Dean of
Students Neil Arter said.
All Monday exams were rescheduled to different times on Tuesday,
Wednesday and Thursday. A large concern was getting all exams
administered. Oklahoma Christian has students from all over the world,
and administration wanted all students to be able to make it to
IT Services reacted immediately to help all of Oklahoma Christian
get through the ice storm. Internet was still available through a
back-up generator. A make-shift Mac Lab was set up in the student
center for students to finish final projects. E-mails and campus
security text messages were also used to keep students and faculty
“I think [the text message system] was a good tool, ” Chief Technology Officer John Hermes said.
The power went out again during a test on Tuesday afternoon. Later
tests were taken in the student center and at Memorial Road Church of
Christ. Some tests did not finish until 9 p.m.
“We did pull together, and from Monday on, calls were made to
everybody. We really kept everyone informed and had a plan,” junior
Will McBroom said.
The atmosphere on campus helped workers do their jobs.
“I think, for the most part, things turned out as well as they could
have. Everybody was very upbeat during the whole situation,” sophomore
Tim Wills said.
Garrett made preparations and informed the faculty of what was to come and what would need to be done.
“That was the most important thing, the things she did preparing the faculty to give exams,” Hermes said.
For students in the campus apartments, there was no power for a
night and some were forced to go to the student center for power.
“I like how OC handled the whole situation, and they made it easy
for everyone to get their finals done,” junior Chase Phillips said.
The ice storm also affected those who live in the Oklahoma Christian campus apartments with children.
Brett and Libby Barnes decided to take their baby, Kaylin, to a friend’s house with electricity.
“It was frustrating because it was pitch black. We were without
light, so we left,” Barnes said. “Taking the baby is like moving out of
a house because there is so much stuff, and then we found out half an
hour later the power was back.”
Most student families took care of themselves, but the administration tried to make sure the young children were safe.
“Some married couples with children made arrangements off campus on
their own and a few of them we placed with families off campus,” Arter
said. “The main concern we had with everyone, but especially small
children, was that we might have to go through a cold night without
electricity and heat, but God took care of us with power each night.”
The ice storm had a varying affect on the Oklahoma Christian campus, and left many students with mixed emotions.
Photo by Jonathan Cannon