Exam week is always the hardest week for college students. Many students stress about creating study guides, and finding enough time to study all the material. However, these are the stresses of normal college students. The students at Averett University during last year’s finals week had to think outside the box in order to ace their exams.
During fall finals, the Wi-Fi went out the night before final exams. This caused many students including myself, to have to find other ways of studying. Several of seniors took this as a sign of bad luck, and we were all going to fail our exams. However, I did not think so I used it as motivation to study twice as hard for my exam. If students found they needed to access the internet in order to study, then they took their laptops to nearby coffee shops to study. The IT department had the Wi-Fi up and running within the next couple of days.
At the time, the Wi-Fi outage seemed like the worst thing in the world. Finals week is already stressful enough, and then to not have Wi-Fi is even worse. However, when spring finals arrived we all learned to be grateful for the simple things we use every day.
When spring finals arrived, the first day of exams went very smoothly and nothing went wrong. It was Monday evening when chaos erupted. We had a bad storm in Danville that evening, so bad we had a tornado watch. I was in the dorms with my friends taking shelter from the possible tornado that could have been approaching the campus, when everything went quiet.
As soon as the campus lost power, you could hear the students on the floors above me and below me moaning in agony. Everyone started to come out of their rooms and try to figure out what had happened. For a small campus, it did not take long to figure out a tree had fallen on a power line and knocked out all the power four miles around Averett. Many students waited until late in the night to start studying, and they went to Starbucks or Subway in Walmart to study. Even though there were rumors going around that morning exams may be canceled I did not want to take any chances, I decided to go ahead and study. I studied while hanging out in the hallway with my friends, and then once it got too dark to study in the hallway I decided to walk down to the Student Success Center to study by the flood lights. It was extremely packed in the Success Center; however, I was able to find a spot by a flood light for my friend and I.
We studied for a major part of the night in the Success Center, and were later joined by a couple more of my friends who came down from the dorms. They came down from the dorms because two of the football players was walking around the dorms in a clown mask and a Purge mask. They would walk around the dorms and would knock on some doors saying, “Hey do you want to play a game?” They got scared and decided to come down to where we were studying, but those football players decided to come down to the Success Center also. Once I saw how terrified my friends were, I texted my resident assistant and told her there were guys with clown masks in the success center, and she got security to come and take the masks away.
After studying for a while, we all decided to go back upstairs to the dorms, because it did not look like the power was coming back on that night. We all went back upstairs, and I charged my phone with my laptop, so I would have that if someone needed to reach me. My roommate charged her phone with a friend’s laptop and then we went to bed in an extremely quiet dorm.
The next morning, we woke up and my morning exam was canceled. I was very lucky that Averett is located in the city, so I could at least take a shower. The shower I took that morning was one of the coldest showers I have ever taken, due to the hot water tank not working. I knew the café would not have a very fulfilling breakfast that morning due to the power outage. Once my roommate awoke and got going, we both hopped in the car and we went to Hardees with our laptops, textbooks, and chargers, and ate breakfast.
Once we finished eating our breakfast, we started studying for our finals. My roommate had to use Wi-Fi to study for test. I preferred the old-fashioned method of flashcards, especially after our last finals week. Once my roommate started studying, she started to notice she was struggling with getting Wi-Fi signal. I asked her if she wanted to go to our favorite coffee shop so she could study easier and she said yes.
We packed up our stuff, and headed to our coffee shop, where we saw some of our professors. They informed us the power should be back on by 10 a.m. We were very hopeful, but since we had an hour until the power was supposed to be back on we sat down with our coffee. We studied for an hour and charged our devices, while observing the many people rushing to work and grabbing their morning coffee. My roommate struggled to concentrate, because of the loud expresso machines and the many conversations that were taking place. However, I found it very pleasing to have something to distract me from studying from time to time.
At 9:58 a.m. I received a text from one of my friends who was back on campus saying the power was back on. We waited a couple minutes, just in case the power came on too quickly and through a breaker and went off again, then we went back to campus. We took our final exams and passed with high grades. Then we started our summer after an adventurous week at college.
Once back on campus, all appreciated having our lights back on. Especially, since the power was out campus wide for 16 hours. The outage made all of the students think of new places to study and different ways to charge their electronics. The students who are normally afraid to say something on campus, had to speak up and help their friends. Other students were forced to think outside the box in order to accomplish what one would think would be a simple task.