By Ethan Nowak

As all of you are well aware by now, our classes may very well be moving online for the remainder of the spring semester. The COVID-19 outbreak unexpectedly put a twist in our normal daily lives as college students at Bryant, requiring us to finish the 2020 semester online. Our teachers have done a fantastic job in preparing us for the remainder of our semester, but adjusting to an online curriculum has been tough for me and potentially others reading. But some of you may have mixed opinions about this, and want to return to school to see friends and have life return to the way it was. I personally would love for that to happen, and hope all of you stay in good health.

Lately, in regards to online learning, I have had trouble focusing on my classes due to my environment around me at home. Too many distractions lead to me often finding myself aloof, twiddling my thumbs, or even looking things up on my computer. Occasionally, my internet will cut out half way through a lecture, I’ve already missed a lab for astronomy due to some internet problems of mine. During my first class of the day, my school computer crashed several times while using Zoom. I hope to not have persistent problems with online learning, but so far it has proved to show issues. I long to go to my town library where I could gain better focus, but most businesses and facilities in my town are closed due to the virus. With most of us at this point wondering, Will we ever go back at all this semester?

Personally, I am not a fan of online learning, but in times like these we take for granted how beneficial a learning environment can be. I would much rather be in a classroom,then use online where I feel detached from the learning unlike a functioning classroom. Up at school for example, contains several great learning environments like Bello or the AIC. In times of a current crisis with COVID-19, most aren’t able to access the campus’s wonderful facilities at this time. This can be very impactful for the students, for some may lack a proficient learning environment, where at Bryant you are surrounded by it. Me being back at school would definitely be beneficial for my learning and would help me focus more.

As the days move on, with this virus it seems more unlikely that we will all see a return to campus and see eachother again. I keep some form of hope despite seeing the news headlines appear on my phone day after day. Despite having these issues with the online system, I do want to thank the university and the professors for doing a great job on short notice to continue our education, even from home. These times may be stressful and scary for many of us, but it is important we come together as a community because we will get through times like these.

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