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Global Ambassador Stories

February 05, 2019

Are You Joining Purdue in the Spring Semester? Tips to Survive Winter

Story by Robert Nyaga

For those joining Purdue in the spring semester, there is always an extra challenge to acclimating- that of having to deal with cold weather. Most places in the Midwest, where Purdue University is located, start experiencing cold weather from mid-October and then temperatures keep dropping till mid-March when they start to peak again. Here are some few tips that can help you to prep well for cold spring weather:

  1. Shop for warm clothes before flying: most often, clothes might be cheaper in your home country than here. Besides, you might experience delays in your flight itinerary if the airports experience temporary closures due to severe weather, such as snow storms. These clothes would therefore keep you warm during such times before you can shop for extra ones after arrival.

  2. Shop for winter boots. Make sure you bring winter boots - ones with good tread to use during snowy days. If you are coming from a warm climate, this might be your first-time experiencing snow and your normal dress-up shoes might be too slippery or lacking a good grip.

  3. Check weather before leaving your apartment. In winter, weather can fluctuate drastically. Checking weather regularly is important in ensuring you don’t underdress for the day or even walk out during severe weather.

  4. Check University news regularly. Sometimes the University closes down if temperatures drop to dangerous levels. This could be during times when there is snow storms or when there is risk of frost bite due to extreme low temperature.

  5. Leave your apartment warm, even when attending classes.  If you turn off your heater, your water pipes might freeze, so it is important to make sure your leave the heater on. In case of any frozen pipes, remember the landlord might charge you for repairs.

  6. Join a connection group. Winters can be isolating because it is the time of the year that most people remain indoors. Luckily, there are several connection groups on campus that you can join. If you don’t drive, members of the connection groups often help international students with shopping and just being mobile around the community.

  7. Avoid winter blues by staying active. Find something fun to do. For some people this would be going to the gym or joining a singing class. Winter blues are real, and sometimes they resemble clinical depression. It is important to therefore stay active, be present in the moment, and take it easy! Winter season does not last forever!

  8. Stay warm! Don’t forget to buy a travel mug to keep your tea or coffee hot. Remember, you still need that extra energy to hack the assignments and research projects!

  9. Got questions, please ask. Most people at Purdue and the surrounding community are friendly. If you have any questions, please ask. It never hurts to ask!

The views of the author are not necessarily those of the Grad School or Purdue University.