Written for The Argo by Kristina Lam
With Covid-19 vaccinations on the rise, Stockton University plans to offer more face-to-face classes for the Fall 2021 semester; while some students and faculty members may see this as a crucial step in returning to normalcy, others are more hesitant to return to in-person learning in fear of a possible third wave of the virus. To better understand the hopes and concerns of the student body, the Argo reached out to a number of Stockton students.
Some students, like BSN major Colin Bernsten and mathematics major Tyler Harvain, claim to be excited about the prospect of Stockton University offering more in-person classes next semester. Both students argue that face-to-face classes provide a better learning environment, as opposed to the restrictions of virtual learning. Though Bernsten expresses no concern regarding the possibility of a third wave, Harvain predicts that there is a “high chance” of Covid-19 being problematic in the coming semester.
Madison McDaniel, a communications major, is excited to see an increase in the availability of in-person classes, under the condition that students and faculty remain safe throughout the reopening process. Considering the recent influx in vaccinations, McDaniel is not concerned about a rise in Covid-19 cases next semester.
However, the possibility of super spreader events like parties and large gatherings taking place on campus worries her. She thinks everyone just needs to continue taking necessary safety measures to protect themselves and transition to person. Though she sees the likelihood of the fall semester being completely “normal” to be slim, McDaniel does think that an increase in face-to-face classes will improve Stockton student’s overall happiness.
Like McDaniel, marine science major Audra McFarland has mixed feelings regarding the possible rise in face-to-face classes. She states that she is excited for things to get back to normal, but she is concerned that the transition may be taking place too early for comfort. She predicts that cases will rise if members of the community refuse to take the pandemic seriously and act as though everything is back to normal. Victor Ramirez, a business major, shares McFarland’s concerns.
He claims that this news makes him question his safety, and that he doubts that Covid-19 safety guidelines will be properly heeded once campus fully reopens. He predicts that the virus will spread easier and make campus an unsafe environment.