Local colleges work to keep students safe, accommodated

by: Tenikka Smith Updated:

CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Students are hunkering down on college campuses across Charlotte during the snowstorm.
"The biggest thing I want to emphasize is for students to stay on campus and don't get in your cars and try to drive off campus,” said Queens University Assistant Vice President of Public Safety Raymond Thrower.
Instead, students at Queens are encouraged to use the dining hall and wellness center.
In preparation for the storm Queens set aside space so that key staff and police officers will be able to spend the night on campus.
Students at Johnson and Wales will likely venture out from their dorms and head to the student center.
"If they are feeling cooped up they can come and shoot hoops, they can hang out in the Wildcat den, it's a nice place to congregate,” Johnson and Wales Media Relations Manager Melinda Law said.
Student assistants like Emily Williams will help keep key buildings open if staff can't make it.
"We're able to be that upper level of student leadership to help out,” Williams said.
A spokesperson said Johnson C. Smith has ordered extra food for its dining hall.
In the event that there's a power outage, the college will get food brought in from a nearby restaurant and move students to the generator-powered gym.
The cafeteria, some indoor recreation areas and Atkins Library will be open at UNC Charlotte.  Crews are also ready to clear roads and sidewalks as needed.
While precautions are in place, students, faculty, and staff are reminded to play it smart.
"The thing we want to emphasize most is students as well as faculty and staff needs to make decisions that will help ensure their safety,” UNCC Public Relations Director John Bland said.

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