Gow Explains Closing Of UW-L Thursday

Greetings, students and colleagues. If you've been outside today you know we're not experiencing the kind of severe weather that was forecast so prominently late last night. In fact, the current forecast indicates we may not even get any rain until 4 or 5 o'clock this afternoon, with snow to follow overnight. As you can appreciate, I wish we could undo last night's decision to cancel classes and close campus this afternoon. Unfortunately, though, our announcement set a wide range of contingency plans into motion and it is not possible to reverse course completely at this time. Nonetheless, here is where things stand: *1) All classes after noon today and tonight remain canceled.* *2) All UW-L employees who wish to work may do so.* *3) We will do our best to have as many offices and facilities open this afternoon. However, because of staffing inconsistencies and challenges created by last night's campus closure announcement it will not be possible to have every facility available. For example, it is my understanding right now that the REC will be open this afternoon, but Murphy Library will not. So please check with a particular area to see what is available. Situations may change as the day progresses.* I deeply regret the many inconveniences last night's decision and announcement will cause. Please know that the staff in any office or facility that is not open this afternoon had nothing to do with the decision that was made last night. I am the one who leads the team of people who make these kinds of decisions and I take full responsibility for the consequences. So please direct any disappointment or frustration to me. In particular, I'd like to personally apologize to our very dedicated and talented faculty for so dramatically disrupting your course schedules. I know from my own extensive experience as a professor that it is no small matter to lose a planned class or lab meeting. Our time with our students is precious and in the scope of things--as is so true of our broader lives--there really aren't any "make-up" days. Hopefully, we won't have any serious weather issues overnight and we'll be back to normal operations tomorrow morning. We'll certainly be keeping an eye on the forecast, and if any unusual action is needed tomorrow I'll let you know as soon as I can. Thanks for your patience as we work through a very unexpected and dynamic situation. I don't know about you all, but I'll remember this particular "storm" for a long time. Best wishes, Joe

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