Picture this: Environment Canada has issued a storm warning; meetings and dates are being postponed; and people are looking anxiously (and excitedly) out the window for snowflakes.
At NSCAD, how do we decide if it’s a snow day and everyone can stay beneath the covers? The safety and well being of faculty, staff and students is our priority and we aim to give as much advance notice as
The decision is made well in advance of the morning commute by taking into account current and forecasted weather conditions; information on the condition of roads and sidewalks; status of public transit; and anticipated conditions during commute periods.
Here’s the process:
The call is made early in the morning, by approximately 5:30-6 a.m. NSCAD’s Director of Facilities Randall Turple makes the call, consulting with his counterparts at other universities and with Sharon Johnson-Legere, NSCAD’s VP Finance. If the decision to close the university is made, the decision is communicated to Marilyn Smulders, Director of Communications, who in turn makes the decision known on various channels as soon as possible.
The first place to check if campuses are closed is the homepage of the NSCAD website under the heading “News.” A push notification (a text message) will also be sent out via the NSCAD mobile app to everyone who subscribes to the service. (LINK: Please see instructions for downloading AppArmour to your smart phone.) Outgoing messages will be updated on the main switchboard and the main phone line of Student and Academic Services.
Other places where a decision of NSCAD’s closure will be posted include: the NSCAD Facebook page, NSCAD’s Twitter account @NSCADUniversity, and CBC Nova Scotia’s Storm Centre. University closure will also be communicated to local radio stations, for example, CBC-Radio, C-100, The Bounce 101.3, Q104, etc.
The decision to close the university's three campuses means classes and special events are cancelled and most faculty and staff are not required to report to work. It also means evening classes scheduled through Extended Studies are cancelled. However, except in unusual circumstances, the university is never usually completely closed; security guards are on duty and students can access studios.
Should NSCAD decide to remain open and continue with classes when primary and secondary Halifax schools are closed and buses are cancelled, a simple message such as “NSCAD is open for business as usual” will be communicated on the website, Facebook and Twitter, without use of the wider communication channels.
This image of a snowy Halifax day--“Winter, Northwest Arm”--was painted
by Elizabeth Styring Nutt in 1927 while she was principal of the Nova
Scotia College of Art. It is part of the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia