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Plymouth State Doesn’t Take Student Safety Seriously

By Kateri Bean and Burret McBee
On November 24, 2017

Plymouth State Doesn’t Take Student Safety Seriously 

On the Monday following the storm last week all of the schools in the Plymouth area were closed except for Plymouth State University, arguably the school in the most danger. As a dedicated student, but also a commuter, the fact that we had classes in the wake of such an intense storm made my life especially difficult. I did not have electricity that morning and my usual route to campus was undrivable due to fallen trees. To make matters worse, once I finally arrived on campus, I had no place to park because the ice arena lot was closed, so I had to use the temporary lot.

Unfortunately, not even thirty minutes into my first class, I received an email saying I would need to remove my car from the temporary lot (even though it had been deemed a safe place to park the night before). It would have been considerate of Plymouth State to close campus at that point and allow the students and faculty to head home before the actual flood, but they did not. This forced me to park at the armory and then run back to campus to attend my second class. t

By the time my class ended, the river had begun to flood and all my usual routes home were closed. My cellphone was not charged because I had no power at my house the night before and I felt stranded. Without a GPS and with so many roads leading out of Plymouth being shut down I began to panic. Luckily, after a lot of driving and turning around, I ended up on the Tenney Mountain Highway and was able to return home.

Plymouth State is well aware of the fact that their campus is built alongside a river which floods several times a year and they are also aware that many of the students who attend the school are commuters. For Plymouth State to ignore the danger of the flooding and toss to the side any concern for the hundreds of students, faculty, and staff who must drive to campus daily is not only inconsiderate but scary. On Monday I had two choices, either skip the classes which I am paying for and fall behind or attend classes and risk losing my car or maybe even my life. Plymouth State knew that there was a high chance of flooding on Monday and Steven Temperino even sent out an email Friday to announce the closures of some parking lots. Given this information, Plymouth State should have been prudent enough to cancel Monday classes altogether. By canceling classes it would have eliminated the extra cars on campus and ensured the safety of all students, faculty, and staff.

I hope that going forward Plymouth State takes into consideration the dangers of flooding and the lives of their students. Not every student who attends Plymouth State has a two minute walk to a dorm, some students have to park cars and drive on roads in order to get to class. If the local public schools and even the boarding school next to our campus can put their students’ safety first, then Plymouth State definitely can too. 

-Kateri Bean and Burret McBee 

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