The first campus snowfall of the semester came on Wednesday, bringing a communal experience for students who are once again adjusting to socially distanced life at Duke.
More than an inch of snow fell in the early hours of the morning. Although Duke did not cancel classes or activate severe weather policies, students found excitement in the winter weather.
Sophomore Winnie Lu wasn't sure it was going to snow when she first saw the weather reports.
“I [knew] from earlier, from checking the weather app, that it was supposed to snow, but I didn’t believe it,” Lu said. Later, when one of her suitemates alerted her to snow, she went outside to “stomp in the grass” and make snowballs.
Simran Sokhi, a junior from Singapore, stayed up to watch the snow fall and do homework.
“I live in Crowell, so I’ve got a nice view out my window,” she said. “I kept looking every five minutes, honestly.”
Sokhi ventured outside in her slides and socks.
Senior Laura Benzing woke up early on Wednesday and saw sunlight coming in through her window. She thought it would be a warm day until she saw an Instagram story posted by a friend.
“He posted a video at 3 a.m. of all the snow as he was walking out of lab,” Benzing said.
Classes kept some students from fully enjoying the snowfall.
“When I woke up I saw the snow and I was very excited,” first-year Annie Lin said. But Lin had two online classes Wednesday morning, and by the time they were over the snow had mostly melted.
Megan Zheng, a junior, also had classes in the morning. Towards the end of her last class, junior Grace Dessert—one of her roommates—brought her a snowball from outside.
Get The Chronicle straight to your inbox
Signup for our editorially curated, weekly newsletter. Cancel at any time.
“I had an 8:30, so I got out in the morning and got to see the snow,” Dessert said. “I remembered that Megan wanted to see the snow so I picked up a nice, thick piece of snow, made it into a ball, and carried it home like a little baby in my scarf.”
The snowball, which the two named Steve, is housed in their freezer.
“I really wish it had snowed more,” Zheng said. “I think everyone was really excited and it was something that a lot of people bonded over. I feel like a lot of people are feeling disconnected, and when something in common happens with everyone, people love it a lot.”
Junior Sagar Shah, who is from Orlando, said he’s only experienced snow in Durham. Most of the snow had melted by the time he went outside on Wednesday, but he found a small snowman still standing on a West Campus bench.
“I thought, ‘You know what, that snowman is the human species,’” Shah said. “Resilient.”