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Swarthmore freezes dormitories to save energy

in Columns/Opinions/Satire by

To keep up with Swarthmore’s commitment to being green and eco-friendly, Swarthmore announced Tuesday that it will leave dormitories without heating outside of the facilities department’s office hours. This announcement follows its declaration of Operation Cold War, which turned off hot waters for showers last December.

“We are trying to live up to our promise to become an eco-friendly institution,” said Olaf Snowman, facilities staff member. “We saved a lot of money when we turned off hot water in various dorms last year. We thought it would be a great idea to try something like that again, so we’re going to turn off the heaters in many dorms. But students should not worry at all! My lovely colleagues in the Worth Health Center will be there to help should students fall ill due to our commitment to eco-friendliness. Everything will be fine!”

Nicole McEskimo, another facilities staff member, expressed approval of this announcement, citing not only its positive environmental effects, but also its initiative to move the world toward a more “natural” state.

“Things like heaters are the number one things that move the human world farther away from the natural state of being in which the Earth was created upon,” McEskimo said. “When humans did not have any heaters, we braved the winter cold with just fire, a natural element of the Earth. Nowadays, not only are we using electricity to create fake heat, we are normalizing the use of this terrible, unnatural creation, which hinders the natural processes of Mother Nature. We must reduce use of such inventions to an absolute minimum.”

When asked if she ever turns on heaters at home, McEskimo started talking about her own experience living in a dormitory 40 years ago as a college student.

According to Dana Alice Kemp, Workbox staff member, part of this initiative’s goal is to teach students a lesson for complaining too much about the flaky heat systems.

“Students should feel grateful that they have heat in the first place,” Kemp said. “I think Swarthmore students need to learn to think more positively. Having heat is not a right. It is a privilege that is only given to those who deserve it. We want to show that we can always take it away if we feel like we should.”

Student anger was apparent as soon as the facilities department made this announcement. Residents of Wharton Hall, who still enjoy complimentary ice cold showers to this day, picketed  around the building demanding the administration immediately turn the heaters back on. Some students who have friends living in Strath Haven Condominiums or other off-campus housing resorted to camping out there, after reportedly having shiver attacks in their own rooms. The anger, however, was especially apparent among residents in Mary Lyons.

“Thank you, Swarthmore, for giving me another reason to hate my dorm,” said Brieanna Merry ’20, a resident of Mary Lyons. “I used to feel so relieved after I finally got to my dorm every day to some heat, because it actually made me feel like I was at home, like many people in ML feel. But instead, I now return to an igloo after nearly freezing to death outside. My roommate and I are thinking about creating a makeshift bonfire in the middle of our room. Maybe then, at least we will find out what being an Eskimo is like! How exciting is that! So thankful that Swarthmore is stretching itself to this extent to give me a true liberal arts education and hands-on learning! Can I get academic credit for this?”

The heater, according to the facilities staff, will remain turned off until the beginning of the summer.

Disclaimer: This article was written with a purely satirical purpose. All of the information presented in this article are thus false.

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