Millikin Students Have Troubles Viewing Eclipse

Millikin Students Have Troubles Viewing Eclipse

Everything must go according to plan to view a solar eclipse. 

The fact that it was viewable widespread across America is huge in the first place. Total eclipses are often unable to be seen from the United States. Before the 2017 eclipse, the last total eclipse able to be seen within our borders was in 1979, with only five states able to view the eclipse. 

Even if the stars (or moon and sun) align in this way in the first place, the issue of weather becomes a huge problem as well. Fingers were crossed along the viewing line that the sun would even be able to be seen on the given day. Fortunately, the weather today was perfect for viewing this phenomenon. It was partly cloudy today; however sunny conditions were more prevalent for most of the afternoon. 

Everything lined up to perfection for Millikin students. However, where do you get those sought-after glasses? 

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Millikin’s answer? The University Commons, starting at 10 in the morning, ending around five minutes later due to the small number of glasses. Because there were only 200 pairs of glasses available, many students left empty handed and worried that they wouldn’t be able to view the eclipse. 

Senior Cheyenne McMillion was one of these students.  

“They said that the glasses would be available around 10:00,” she said. “I got to campus probably around 10:05 and I walked straight to the UC. I got there around 10:15 and they said they were completely out of everything. There were still multiple people needing them, but you weren’t able to get any unless you got there at 10:00 on the dot.” 

Regardless of the lack of supplies, McMillion believes that the glasses handout was advertised well. Perhaps this is why supplies ran out so quickly. 

“There were lots of people there,” she said. “The problem was that they didn’t have enough to fill the interest on campus. The way I see it is we’re all stuck on campus, so we all need glasses. We’re all going to be here when the eclipse happens, so we need the glasses available here to us.” 

At the same time as the eclipse, many classes are taking place. Missing out on an event like this due to a class is extremely unfortunate, leaving many students, McMillion included, wondering why teachers still held classes. 

“So many people have been saying they aren’t going to class because of the eclipse,” she said. “Most of my classes were cancelled today, but not all of them. So, I drove an hour away to go to one class because the other three were cancelled. It’s just kind of a mess.” 

McMillion wasn’t the only one confused with the scheduling of classes today. Freshman Lily Moore had a difficult time even getting glasses due to her class schedule. Along with that, she experienced difficulties finding the glasses handout in the first place. 

“We heard they were handing the glasses out, but we couldn’t find them anywhere,” she said. “Someone told me that they started handing them out at 10:00, so I decided to go try to find them before my class, but they were already gone.” 

Part of the issue besides availability was the packaging that the glasses were handed out in. Many of the glasses were handed out in pairs of two. So, to get a hold of them, you had to know somebody who had a pair and was willing to share. 

“One of my friends told me that they were handing out two glasses to each person,” Moore said. “That was definitely part of the issue.” 

Millikin was extremely fortunate to have such a good view of the eclipse in the first place. It has been several years since the United States has been able to experience an eclipse of this magnitude, and classes simply got in the way of that. 

“This is a once in a lifetime opportunity,” Moore said. “A lot of people live in places where there’s never been an eclipse. So many people haven’t seen one, and we were so close to one.”

Kemper Koslofski

As for the students who skipped classes and traveled south, they had an experience to remember. Sophie Gibbs, Sports Editor for the Decaturian, was one of these students who made the trip. 

“It got dark really fast, and it suddenly looked like it was 9:00 at night,” she said. “It was cool to look at because when the sun was covered it instantly because when the sun was covered it instantly became a glowing orb. When the sun was even a sliver out, it was super bright, and it had to be fully covered to get the full effect. It was so amazing to see in person.” 

Whether you viewed the eclipse from Southern Illinois or Decatur, you likely saw large groups of people looking up at the sky. It was extremely exciting to see so many students get outside at the same time, almost as if the eclipse was ushering in warmer weather. For the rest of the week, the lowest temperature will be around 59 degrees.

So, take advantage of the warm weather. Get outside and usher it in. This warm weather is fleeting at times in central Illinois—just like an eclipse. 

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About the Contributors
Kemper Koslofski
Kemper Koslofski, Editor-in-Chief
Kemper Koslofski serves as the current Editor-in-Chief for the Decaturian. Born and raised in Decatur, he is very passionate about journalism and the opportunities that it can provide its writers and readers. Kemper also serves as a Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) leader on campus. Editor-in-Chief: January 2023-Present Sports Editor: March 2023-December 2023
Sophie Gibbs
Sophie Gibbs, Sports Editor

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