By Natalie Notaro
In a semester with Covid-19, the usual frenzy of getting out the door on time has been replaced with the casual opening of a laptop, sometimes even in bed. As the fall semester kicks off, students at the College are attempting to reacclimate themselves to online learning while continuing to cope with the devastating effects of the current pandemic.
Many students are disheartened to continue remote learning and yearn for the days when they could grab dinner at Eick, study on the third floor of the library and, of course, attend in-person class. Although the shift from Flex to remote learning is not ideal for students, it is necessary for the health and well being of the College’s community. We as a student body should devote time to appreciating the benefits of online learning rather than focusing on the drawbacks.
It is undeniable that with online learning comes a handful of unconventional and unexpected benefits, some of which I never knew I needed. For instance, how nice is it to roll out of bed at 7:45 a.m. and attend class in your pajamas? Or be able to grab a snack and go to the bathroom at your own convenience? It’s important during these trying times to look at the bright side and learn to adapt.
So you may be wondering, what else is there to be positive about besides going to class in your slippers and pajamas? Professors at the College have been as accommodating as ever. All of my professors have voiced that our health and well-being is the top priority over any assignment. I feel comfortable going to them if I were to ever need any extensions.
One of my professors even offered the class two “late passes” on any assignments of our choice this semester. They understand that we are meeting under undesirable circumstances, and are more than willing to adapt for our needs. This is not to say that I can start slacking on my work but I know that all of my professors will understand and help me keep up with my work if a circumstance is to arise.
We need to remember that the decision made by College President Kathryn Foster to switch to remote learning was probably not an easy one. We are still in the midst of a threatening pandemic and need to appreciate the safety that online learning gives us. In-person instruction would not be in the best interest of students, professors or staff who are immunocompromised. Each class that we take in the safety of our own homes protects ourselves and others, and I am grateful to attend a college where my health is prioritized.
Although we are only three weeks into the fall semester, I have found myself to be more relaxed than I have been in previous semesters. Online courses allow for a more flexible schedule. I find that I am not as stressed about my workload, because I have more time to lounge around the house and focus on my assignments.
Instead of complaining about remote learning, students should take time to recognize all of the benefits that online learning offers. We can all get through this semester with a smile and hopefully be back on campus in the spring.