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The basics
THE USA: Latest News

Central New York’s Syracuse University named the US’s snowiest college

A new survey by The Weather Channel reveals Syracuse University as the nation’s snowiest

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Syracuse University has momentarily ditched its bright, iconic orange for fresh, powder white.

A list published by The Weather Channel last Wednesday has officially named Syracuse as the ‘snowiest college in America’.

Whilst the college has recently lost the top spot on the US college basketball ranking to Florida, it definitely pulls rank when it comes to snow. The central New York campus was reported to see an average of more than 126 inches of snow annually.

Four other New York schools also made the top 25: Colgate University at number 7, Cornell University at number 11, and SUNY Albany and Siena College tied for number 17.

 ‘Syracuse is heads and shoulders above the rest when it comes to annual snowfall total,’ The Weather Channel writer Alan Raymond told Syracuse local news. ‘ ‘Cuse gets more than 10 feet of snow every year.’

Schools in the Midwest, Northeast and Intermountain West were generally found the snowiest, with Northern Arizona University coming in at second place. Located near the Grand Canyon, the campus sees almost 98 inches of snowfall every year due to higher degrees of humidity than in the rest of the state.

A similar list from AccuWeather however ranks SU as only the second snowiest, but completed the study with much less specific criteria. The Weather Channel measured snowfall at nearly 350 Division 1 colleges and universities in the US, cross-referencing the 30-year season snowfall average with data pertaining to the city the campus is located in. AccuWeather’s list also included Division II schools, and instead named Michigan Technological University as the nation’s snowiest.

Monthly snowfall at Michigan Tech was reported as close to 200 inches. The average yearly snowfall is about 207 inches. A recent snowstorm saw temperatures drop to as low as -30 °C last week.

‘Our university celebrates the snow,’ president of the University’s Blue Key Honour Society said in the AccuWeather report. ‘Back in 1922, something started called winter carnival and people would build snow statues and host events for both the students and the community to celebrate in the snow. It really exemplifies what it means to be part of the community as a student and local as well.’

It is also not uncommon for Michigan Tech students to snowmobile, ski or bike to class!

Syracuse students similarly offset the bitter cold of winter by skiing, snowboarding and sledding on nearby mountains. All freshmen and sophomore students are required to live in on-campus housing, and so are at the heart of the action winter-round. The college also provides free connective shuttle buses to downtown Syracuse, where students can enjoy the city’s annual 12-day Winterfest celebration.


Tips for students to survive the cold:

If you can’t make it to class due to heavy snowfall, don’t worry; your university will understand and may even be closed themselves. It’s worth checking your school email inbox and even signing up for text alerts (if this is offered) so you keep up-to-date with the latest news. This is primarily how a university will keep in contact with students in emergencies.

Stock up on food and other necessities if you hear about impending snow storms. Try not to “panic buy” unnecessary items; just buy what you normally would for food and keep in mind how long you may have to stay indoors for.

Use this as an opportunity to make friends. Even if you’re a naturally shy person, emergencies or crises – especially those involving the weather – unite people. It’s a lot easier to get through harsh weather emergencies if you’re with other people; you can pool your resources and generally keep each other company. After all, you’re suffering under the same circumstances and others will understand if you’re not used to these conditions in your own country. You’d be surprised how some friendships begin!

Useful Links

Cultural misconceptions about the USA

Student living costs in the USA

Study in the USA


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