Editorial | Thank you to employees of University

Yesterday marked one of the coldest days in the Midwest in at least two decades. A high of minus 8 degrees and a low of minus 14 degrees — clearly not the best temperature to walk around campus in. The wind chill even dropped as low as minus 30 to minus 45 degrees. To put this in perspective, it was colder here at the University than the average high temperatures on Mars.

The last time the temperature here on campus dropped this low was over two decades ago, on Jan. 5, 1999, with a record low of minus 25 degrees.

In response to the severe weather, Chancellor Robert J. Jones cancelled  classes Wednesday and every class after 6 p.m. Tuesday.

But in doing so, the chancellor brought up an important issue. “It is important to note that even when classes are cancelled the campus does NOT fully close. The residential and research aspects of our operations make a complete closing impossible, so staff members are expected to report to their respective offices or work locations,” he said in a Massmail.

So while nearly every student stayed inside their dorm or apartment under blankets catching up on homework, those that work in dining halls, recreation services, libraries or any other form of university service powered through and clocked into work that day.

We realize it’s not easy to continue working during these conditions, especially considering how some of us live off campus or don’t have access to a car. The students who braved the cold helped the University function even when classes were cancelled.

Sure, there’s no doubt the amount of people calling in on given days like this would be higher than normal. People call in from work all the time for almost any reason.

Students here at the University are close to adulting (or already are) anyway. What’s a cold day to an adult in the real world, where work still continues even during harsh blizzards, severe thunderstorms or in this case, a really cold day?

Whether you’re swiping students in to eat at the Ike, running membership services at the ARC or working the front desk at the lower floor of the UGL. The Daily Illini Editorial Board wants to thank all employees here at the University for braving the colder-than-Mars temperatures and going to work. You’re the best of us.