The onslaught of fluctuating weather in Pennsylvania these last few weeks featured lows of 42 degrees and highs of 80, and the Class of 2024 has opinions.
With demographics representing a plethora of regions within and outside the U.S., including 13 states, Puerto Rico, Cameroon, England and Ghana, 33 freshmen took a poll and weighed in on how to survive the inevitable freezing weather that approaches.
In the first question, respondents were asked what temperature they considered cold: 60, 50, 40, 30 or under 20 degrees. 33.3 percent of students believed that 40 degrees indicated cold weather, 21.2 percent chose between 40 and 50 degrees, 18.2 percent picked 30 degrees and 6.1 percent answered that only under 20 degrees is considered frigid. These weathered individuals represented New York and Minnesota, while conversely, those who answered that 60 degrees was cold represented Florida, Arizona, California and Ghana.
Despite being from New York, freshman Victoria Margena had to gradually adjust to the low temperatures within her dorm room.
“The mornings and late at night are the worst because my room is super cold, but outside it’s not too bad, especially when I’m in the sun,” she said.
From another side of the world is Karl David Fotso, who is from Cameroon. The lowest temperature on average there is 55 degrees.
“It’s been a bit of a struggle, but I’m adjusting,” Fotso said. “The hardest part is in the mornings, but I feel fine by noon.”
When asked which month was the coldest, more than half students responded with January. 24.2 percent chose February, 12.1 percent chose December and only 6.1 percent chose November.
Ironically, freshman Ryan Duff from Connecticut feels that winter has already arrived.
“Normally, I’d still be wearing shorts and would continue to do so throughout early October, but this year, I’m already wearing jeans and hoodies mid-September,” he said.
When offering advice on how to deal with cold weather, four respondents advised to layer up.
Freshman Sara Shuaipi, a native to Pennsylvanian winters, advises bulking up on winter clothes.
“I try to be as comfortable as possible,” she said. “Sweaters, sweatpants with leggings underneath, gloves and other warm clothing. My advice is to wear layers! Don’t forget to cover your ears, hands and your nose, which thankfully for masks, is going to be pretty warm!”
Freshman Christina Jung from Wayne, N.J. has a similar experience to the cold.
“I usually just wear multiple layers, and it is important to have a really good winter jacket,” she said. “If it is really cold outside and my hands are cold, I would put heat packs in my jacket pockets, so my hands are warm. I also wear winter accessories like beanies, scarves and gloves when it gets really cold.”
Freshman Jennifer Attah-Gyamfi from Ghana has already learned the trick to adapting to American winters.
“Layer up,” she advises. “Jackets only over a short-sleeved shirt don’t cut it, especially if you get cold easily. Try long sleeves before a jacket."
As winter encroaches and the temperature continues to drop, the freshmen are more than ready to brave the cold fronts.