How to survive winter in the ‘Burg

Helpful tips on how to make it through winter

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Jack_Lambert

Beau Kelderhouse, Staff Writer

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Winter isn’t coming, it’s here. Getting up for class can be a struggle, since the walk to class will probably be cold and possibly slippery. Although winter will be around for several more weeks, there are a few things students can do to survive this winter and make their lives a little easier.

Staying Healthy:

Many students suffer from the flu and various other illnesses during winter quarter. This means they tend to miss class, attend or  risk passing it on to their classmates. To help prevent more students from getting sick, Executive Director of the Student Medical and Counseling Clinic (SMACC) Chris De Villeneuve advises students to get their flu shot.

“We tend to spend a lot of time inside and in class. The closer we get the more exposed we are to germs,” De Villeneuve said. Some common habits that can increase the likelihood of getting sick are the touching of eyes, face and mouth.

It is not only the physical illnesses that occur during winter. There are also psychological illnesses, such as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).

SAD is depression that occurs when the weather changes. SMACC just partnered with Brooks Library for a project called Lightbox Therapy, which will help students suffering from SAD. The Brooks library has light boxes that students can check out for around 30 minutes to an hour.

“It’s the same effect as normal waking and sleeping, shown to reduce the effects of depression,” De Villeneuve said.

Another way to stay healthy during the winter is clean eating , exercising, going to bed at a decent hour and socializing with friends.

Dressing Warmly:

For the majority of students, winter is about bundling up and staying warm—at least it is for McKenna Lautenbach.

“I make sure that I have snow boots and a good winter jacket. If I see that I need some winter clothes, I ask for some for Christmas,” said Lautenbach, a junior public relations major.

Students can be seen on campus all bundled up in their jackets, boots and snow pants to block out the cold and snow.

However, not all students have access to the warm clothes they may need to protect themselves from the cold.

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For those who are having a difficult time staying warm, Malia Caswell, community programmer for Equity and Community Services, created a way for students to get what they need with the Winter Warm-Up Clothing Collection.

“We are going to give students the opportunity to pick from the clothes if they are lacking cold weather items,” Caswell said.

This is the second year of the clothing drive.  Last year 200 pieces of clothing were donated.

“I haven’t counted yet, but I am pretty sure that we did even better; it makes me so proud of our CWU students and Ellensburg community for how graciously they have donated,” Caswell said.

The CWU community is able to donate throughout the entire year, although winter time is the most popular time to donate.

“I would be absolutely happy to take items at any time,” Caswell said. “There is [also] a clothing closet at the United Methodists Church here in Ellensburg.”

Shoveling Snow:

With the cold weather sticking around, so does the snow and ice, which might make walking to school difficult for the many students who live off-campus.

Luckily, the Ellensburg Police Department has students and community members covered by enforcing that the sidewalks must be cleared of snow and ice.

“There are miles and miles to enforce every sidewalk,” Chief of Police Dale Miller said. “Patrol focuses on sidewalks that are being neglected so they can be safe and wheelchair accessible.”

Miller explained that if the block or homeowners pay no attention to the sidewalk, then they would be contacted. The main goal is cooperation with the homeowners and that if the home has someone who is sick or disabled, there is help for them.

“There would be no ticket,” Miller said. “We would give them options to contact Hope Source, in which they would contact church service projects who could shovel for them.”

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How to survive winter in the ‘Burg