Art students without heat during recent cold snap


Students have long taken refuge from the cold and the wind by moving inside, whether that is by moving into the library or into their classrooms. Right now, all art students can look forward to when they go into their classrooms is more cold.

Those students, who have had their heating down since at least Monday, have been forced to do their work in the cold. Some students have reported that, even though the heat was down, the now cold air conditioning kept blowing into the classrooms, making them even colder, while requests that the air conditioning be turned off proved fruitless.

“It’s terrible,” said Daniel Sterling, a third-year undecided major. “Some classes actually left. They said it was too cold to work.”

CSUN is heated by a hot water heating main which runs under the buildings, said Tom Brown, executive director of Physical Plant Management. A hot water main under the art buildings sprung a leak, he said, shutting down the heat for those buildings. Workers are currently digging up the concrete around the ceramics building. The fix should take two to three days, he said.

“We hope the weather agrees with us,” he said, citing the sudden cold weather for part of the problem. “We’re working on it. That’s the best assurance we can give you right now.”

In the mean time, PPM has given out a heater to each classroom, and students, who are working in their jackets, sweaters, scarves and gloves, have taken heaters from empty classrooms to help heat occupied ones. But for many students this has not stopped the cold from finding its way in.

“We work with water a lot, and it makes it unbearable to work, especially at night when the graduate students work,” said Sandi Escobar, a graduate student in ceramics.

Students who have been working with ceramics have found the cold severely complicates working with clay. The cold makes the clay stick to their hands more than it normally does and makes the clay dry much slower, greatly increasing the difficulty of making ceramics, Sterling said.

“It’s not pleasant to work with clay when your hands are freezing,” he said.