“They Need to Be In Class.”
By: S.M. Haskell
Maricruz Luna did not like online classes. So she took a semester off. Though being back in school she still finds herself online.
“I don’t know how much effort the school is doing to keep us safe,” said Luna. “ They say that they disinfect and clean around the clock but the problem is also the students.”
Luna is afraid. She believes that students can bring the virus from the outside into campus, even when vaccinated. CSI has failed to diminish those fears, people are not coming. Dr. Winnie Eng, a counselor from the counseling office here had this to say.
“I don’t think it’s that easy to answer since students may have different fears due to personal reasons,” said Dr.Eng. “ So I would say that they can call the counseling center to speak with one of us to discuss personal concerns about returning to campus.”
In an online survey from the site ValuePenguin, of more than 1,050 full-time college students, 31% of students said they would not feel safe at all returning back to campuses for the upcoming semester… Over a third of students are afraid that coming back to campus will expose them to the virus.
From Shannon Cammarano, the Director of Enrollment Management, there are currently 11,794 students enrolled for fall semester. Classes are 49% online, 40% hybrid, and only 11% in person.
Before the school year had even begun there were many factors that were hard to determine. Like the amount of students who would come to campus or how effective the precautions would prove to be against the virus.
Luna is not alone. Isaiah Castro, another student with similar views had this to say.
“On one side, it’s good that people are vaccinated but you can still get infected and spread it around,” said Catsro. “I will still be concerned about the virus because we don’t know who they were with before getting on campus.”
Besides feeling that it’s not safe enough to return, some may not even want to come for physical classes at all.
Data from Best Colleges stated that over 40% of returning college students would prefer to come back to campus for hybrid learning, or a mix of online and in-person classes. On the other hand, incoming freshmen would rather stay home and take all of their fall classes remotely.
Over the course of the pandemic it has changed the way that students are being taught, and later down the line we may see some changes that are here to stay.
David Pizzuto, Intern Director of Communications and Marketing, discussed a plan to offer a majority of in-person classes, compared with a much smaller option of hybrid or remote courses to increase the amount of students coming to campus. Though CSI is providing more areas and classes as the school opens up more doesn’t mean that students are willing to go.
The Counseling Office in particular, has had a smooth transition when it comes to working online to slowly openly back up. Dr. Eng, explained the process of how they were online. She explained that it was more convenient for students to sign up since they could have their sessions at home. They use zoom, which most students are used to now.
With the campus open again, even though getting an appointment is quick and easy. The topics discussed during those meetings are very similar, in the fact that students still struggle with their courses being online.
“A lot of people can’t learn through an online format,” said Dr.Eng. “They need to be in class, they need to be sitting with interaction and it’s just harder.”