During Friday floods SEU did not use its ‘best judgement’

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.

Email This Story

Every week the editorial board reflects on a current issue in Our View. The position taken does not reflect the opinions of everyone on the Hilltop Views staff. 

When the apocalypse began early on the morning of Oct. 30, in the form of a thunderstorm, St. Edward’s University responded to its students who were either very freaked out or nonchalant. 

Initially, at 8:45 am, the university sent out a tornado warning urging students to take immediate precautions, “stay away from windows” and “cover their heads.” A few hours later, another message was sent in caps: “CLASSES ARE NOT CANCELLED. USE YOUR BEST JUDGEMENT.”

Unless SEU expected its students and faculty to “cover their heads” and “stay away from windows” as they drove or trekked to school, the messages sent that morning are extremely conflicting.

And what exactly does “Use your best judgement” mean? That message is very subjective and leaves room for a variety of interpretations. 

What if one person’s best judgement is to stay at home and their professor decides to take points of their grade? Then, will SEU defend their use of best judgement?

By even giving students and faculty a need to come to campus that day, the university put lives in danger.  

“My car stalled in high water and I’ve slipped and fallen twice already since I got to campus and my professor hasn’t cancelled my class,” said junior Meredith Bunning in a Facebook post.

Bunning, along with many others, went through dangerous ordeals all to get to class because the university refused to cancel class. 

Instead of taking responsibility and cancelling classes, SEU gave a flimsy cowardly statement to cover its tracks.

It might be sufficient to say that the “classes are not cancelled” message was sent after the tornado warning was already lifted and therefore, there was no urgent threat to students. 

The University of Texas at Austin didn’t cancel classes, but it told students why. St. Edward’s on the other hand has yet to give a statement about why it didn’t cancel classes.  Come hell or high water, literally, guess we have to “take on our world.”