Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan

Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan

Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan


What is your favorite building to study in?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

“This Has Never Happened Before” Power Outage in East Lake

Chris Reed
The entrance to Building C within the East Lake Apartment complex, where the power outage affected the routines of many student residents both inside and outside.

East Lake Building C, located four blocks from the Winona State University main campus, recently had a major power outage.

Elly Herrick, a second-year student who lives in East Lake Building C and also works for The Winonan as a reporter and Online Editor, speaks about their experience.

“Over the weekend [Jan. 27-28] the power shut off on Saturday during between the hours of eight to ten PM,” Herrick explained.

Herrick detailed that first the lights turned off, then the Wi-Fi turned off as well. The next morning [Sunday] the lights and Wi-Fi would periodically turn off and on as well.

Story continues below advertisement

Sarah Olcott, the Director of Housing, explains what specifically happened to cause the power outage.

“On the outside of the building, there are main breaker boxes. The sealant on the main breaker box failed because of how old it is. Moisture got into that box, and that cut power to the whole building,” Olcott explained.

Olcott continued, saying that the first night of the power outage they had identified the problem, dried the whole box out, and got the power to work again. But when it happened again on Sunday, they tried to fix the problem with the same solution and it did not work.

Eventually, the electricians replaced the sealant on the breaker box and added a preventative covering on the box

Herrick stated that during that period, students were not able to do their homework so many went to Main Campus to study.

“Because of what happened, Ann Durley (The East Lake Hall Director) communicated with us via email about what was going on and gave us two free meals in the dining hall. I thought that was really great because I think a lot of people were having issues with their fridges,” Herrick said.

Olcott expressed that aside from the emails, RA’s (Resident Assistants) would go door-to-door to explain the situation to the residents of the apartment building. With Wi-Fi not available to students, they still wanted to the information to get out to students.

Herrick stated that her biggest worry regarding the power outage was security. Normally on campus, you need a specific card to electronically get you into the buildings, but their worry was that anyone could get into the building because of the lack of power.

Olcott explained that this has not happened before at Winona State, and that the team involved is working to fix the problem efficiently for the future.


Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributors
Sophia Sailer
Sophia Sailer, Editor-in-Chief

Sophia Sailer (she/her/hers) is currently the Editor-in-Chief at The Winonan.

Sailer is also a DJ for KQAL and hosts “Sippin’ with Sophie” on Saturdays from 3-6 PM. You’ll also catch Sailer at TV Services in Phelps, if you ever need to rent out a camera.

Sailer is from Eden Prairie, Minnesota and is a fourth-year student at Winona State University studying Mass Communication: Creative Digital Media as her major, and Advertising and Film studies as her minors. She loves talking to people and making sure their voices are heard and hopes to do that with her leadership at the Winonan.

Recently Sailer studied abroad for 2 weeks in Italy, creating art.

Sailer’s hobbies include listening to music, shopping, making art, and hanging out with friends.

Chris Reed
Chris Reed, Photographer
Chris Reed (he/him/they/them) is currently a photographer for the Winonan.
Reed is from Golden Valley, Minnesota, right outside Minneapolis and is a first-year student at Winona State University studying psychology with a minor in photography. He enjoys helping people and making sure they feel heard.
Reed can often be found rock climbing or bouldering; hiking; camping; playing pool, ping pong or board games; practicing cello or bass; or, when time allows, on a roadtrip.

Comments (0)

All The Winonan Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *