OPINION: We don’t need snow days, toughness is the K-State way

Anderson Hall basks in the sun on a snowy day on the K-State Manhattan campus. (Rowan Jones | Collegian Media Group)

Let me preface this opinion by saying the following: I hate the cold.

I’m always that person in class still wearing a puffy coat, I’m an expert at layering and my hot beverage consumption is through the roof (ask me about my favorite teas; I have an entire rant). If there was a way to magically transport myself to Florida for the remainder of the winter months, I would absolutely do it.

It seems that many of my fellow students share this opinion, as announcements that Kansas State University would be open today despite the snowy, icy weather last night were followed by not-so-mild outrage. Angered commenters on social media pointed to cancelled classes at the University of Kansas, Wichita State University and local K-12 schools. So why didn’t K-State cancel?

Angela Duckworth, author of the bestselling book “Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance,” said that “greatness requires internal toughness.” K-State is known for its agricultural heritage. This school was built on generations of farmers and ranchers who had cattle to feed and crops to tend to in rain, snow or sun. It was built by a state that believes in ideals like freedom and equality and proves it in everyday toughness and hard work.

The university is no exception to this legacy. K-Staters have grit. They’re self-sufficient, hard-working and dedicated. Some of the most diligent and innovative people I’ve ever met are right here in Manhattan. They don’t take no for an answer — even when the wind chill cuts into your skin and the roads are covered in slush.

I’m grateful to go to a school that recognizes this dedication and drive, and continues to hold students to a high standard by not canceling classes even when Arctic temperatures hit the state of Kansas. We might have to add a few extra layers or throw on a hat and gloves, but it’s doable.

While I know the administration always has concern for our safety, I’m glad they have confidence in our ability to be self-reliant. It’s that idea of “internal toughness” that makes K-State students unlike any others: not even a potential snow day can keep us down.

Let’s go ‘Cats!

Olivia Rogers is a community editor for the Collegian, the secretary of the College Republicans at Kansas State and a junior in political science. The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Collegian. Please send comments to opinion@kstatecollegian.com.

I’m Olivia Rogers. I graduated with dual degrees in philosophy and political science in May 2020. After I graduated, I went on to attend law school at Notre Dame. While at the Collegian, I served as the community editor for several semesters, working to share the opinions of the K-State student body. I write because: “Stories make us more alive, more human, more courageous, more loving.”― Madeleine L'Engle