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El Niño incoming: Weather expectations for Winter 2023-2024

By Lauren Ritirato, Staff Writer

In the midst of a warm fall season, a near-average amount of snowfall is expected to hit the Northeast this year. A stark contrast from last winter, in which a light 17.7 inches of snow was recorded for the entirety of winter. Meteorologists are predicting 26 inches of snow in New York City this year with the average snowfall in New York being 29.8 inches. 

El Niño is a random and naturally occurring event that happens every two to seven years in which wind patterns affect weather in various ways throughout the world. For New York this year, it means a colder, wetter, winter filled with snow, ice and slush. 

This potentially overwhelming forecast may cause problems for commuting Post students. 

Sophomore psychology and criminal justice major Emily Morando expressed her distaste for the snow and her distaste for commuting in such weather conditions. 

“I liked snow when I was little, I loved building snowmen,” Morando said. “As I’ve gotten older I don’t like driving in it. My commute is about 30 minutes. I’ve only driven one time in light flurries, but this would be the main reason I don’t want snow.”

Sophomore education major Carolyn Leon agrees that snow may cause trouble when commuting to campus. 

“I do commute to school, but this wouldn’t affect my personal commute that much,” Leon stated. “My commute is probably 25-30 minutes, but I know other people that have an hour commute and I could imagine that being awful. It will probably be a bit annoying, I will just have to take it slow.”

Senior digital arts and design major Michael Moffa shared his opinion on being a student living on campus when it snows.  

“They shovel a little bit,” Moffa shared. “I feel like I may slip sometimes and we need clear walkways to get around.”

Blizzard of 2015 New York City / Courtesy of Anthony Quintano

While El Niño is expected to bring heavy precipitation, slush and ice, Post students are excited for the chance at having a snow day, which they did not have last year. Leon reflected on the nostalgia of snow days as a child and how the feeling has not changed. 

“I would love a snow day,” Leon said. “We aren’t in high school or elementary school anymore but nothing beats that feeling of waking up and realizing you don’t have to go to school so I would definitely love a snow day.”

Leon is also excited about her winter traditions and hopeful to enjoy them during a long-awaited school snow day. 

“I do like snow,” she said. “I think especially during Christmas time it’s pretty but it can be a pain to drive in and shovel. I have two older brothers so usually they’re on shoveling duty and I’m on hot chocolate duty so I like to just sit and watch movies and not shovel.”

Morando is less excited about the impending forecast predictions. 

“It would be nice to have a snow day to be off from school,” Morando said. “Other than that I don’t really see any benefits to snowfall. I think this just has the biggest effect on commuting safely as a student.” 

Despite the challenges, there is some excitement among students for the possibility of a snow day, a rare occurrence that brings back nostalgic memories for many. Leon reminisced about the joy of waking up to unexpected days off from school, while also looking forward to celebrating winter traditions during a well-deserved break. As the start of a cold winter is beginning, Post students find themselves debating between the inconveniences of winter weather and the hope for a cherished snow day. It is important to be prepared for a heavy amount of snowfall from the incoming El Niño this year.

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