Most students are happy to be back on campus after months of being home as a result of COVID-19. However, for some students, coming back wasn’t possible. Due to health conditions, financial worries, and many other reasons, some students were unable to return back to campus with their peers.
Three weeks ago, students at St. Ambrose University settled into their dorm rooms and off-campus apartments eager for the start of the semester and grateful to be back where many consider home. While they have been focused on learning new safety precautions and how to recognize each other under the masks, other students are learning how to adapt to a new version of online learning.
While many classes are still taught with in-person instruction, students at home have had to work with faculty and staff to remain in required classes without falling behind. Even with adjustments made for online students, it isn’t a perfect solution.
Rahel Araya, a senior management major, is one student adjusting to remote learning while home in Carol Stream, Illinois.
“I’ve found it difficult to always know what’s going on in my classes,” Rahel said. “It can be hard to watch recordings of a class because everyone has masks on so I can’t always hear what I need to. Also, I’m not there to contribute or ask questions.”
Students are also finding that they are missing out on their college experience.
“It’s been pretty hard just not seeing anyone,” Rahel said. “I miss the late nights studying with my friends, having my internship, and being there for the clubs I’m apart of. It’s also just hard not being with everyone else. It was one thing last spring when everyone was home, but now the world is just revolving without us there.”
As a student with an autoimmune disease on immunosuppressant medications, I was also unable to return to campus for my senior year. I am grateful to have professors that have made accommodations for me to remain in all of my classes, but I miss being around my friends, classmates, and professors. It’s not how I expected my senior year to go.