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Students React To Only Having Online Classes After Thanksgiving Break

By Emma Robinson and Jillian Mehta

News Editor, Arts & Entertainment Editor

Post will be moving to remote learning after Thanksgiving break on Nov. 30 until the start of the spring semester on Feb. 1. Students were informed of the schedule change by an email sent out by Chief of Student Affairs Michael Berthel on Tuesday, Oct. 27, six days before in-person classes resumed on Monday, Nov. 2.

The spring semester will consist of social distancing protocols such as daily self-checks and requiring masks in public spaces and will also be suspending breaks such as Spring Break and President’s Day.

In the email from Berthel, Post claimed to be keeping students updated with information regarding changes on campus as they occur.

“It has been important for us to communicate with you regularly and share information as it becomes available,” the email said. “While we understand that the need to adapt and change is a necessity throughout this pandemic, we remain committed to keeping you informed every step of the way.”

Some campus residents were shocked by the news.

“I couldn’t believe what I was reading,” sophomore veterinary medicine major Sarah Henderson said. “I wish the school had told us in advance that this would be happening because I know so many other schools that told their students this before the semester even started.”

Other residents were not surprised. 

“I wasn’t really that shocked to be honest,” sophomore musical theatre major Sara Wally said. “I kinda saw it coming because I knew Thanksgiving break would be really hard for out of state students to go home and come back.

Residents are now rushing to make plans for the rest of the semester.

“I already got my plane ticket,” sophomore musical theatre major BrayLynn Willis said. “I’m from Colorado and I’m not going to wait until last minute to go home. It’s not worth it to stay on campus.”

Wally is planning on going back home to Oklahoma for Thanksgiving and staying for the remainder of the semester. She was disappointed about staying home during the last three weeks of classes.

“I wish they would have allowed in-person classes to be an option for students,” Wally said. “That way the students who weren’t going home for Thanksgiving could continue to take classes in person I think in a lot of ways it sucks for those students.”

Henderson is from Washington state and worries about the time difference.

“When we went online last year, my 8 a.m.’s became 5 a.m.’s,” Henderson said. “I already know I am going to have a hard time re-adjusting to online classes so everything being earlier is going to stress me out.”

Henderson further spoke about how some of her classes are completely unable to be online.

“I paid to take horse-back riding lessons and they’re going to be canceled,” Henderson said. “It makes me think of all of the arts and hands-on veterinary classes that can’t be online.”

Wally worries about theatre classes online.

“I’m pretty much used to online classes by now, but it doesn’t make online theatre classes any easier though,” Wally said.

Students are trying to be understanding of the school’s decision due to the circumstances of the pandemic and recent spread of over 60 cases on campus since Oct. 14.

“There’s nothing we can even do about it,” Willis said. “It’s shocking and it’s natural to feel misled. I’m sure a lot of students would not have paid to live on campus if we knew we would lose so much of the semester. It’s a complete waste of money and time. However, I think given the circumstances and how so many people will be traveling for Thanksgiving, LIU is stopping a potential outbreak on campus.”

Students hope that classes will return to being in-person next semester, but the email from Berthel did not state whether in-person classes will resume next semester.

 “I’m grateful that they [will probably be] in person,” Wally said. “I’m hoping that we have learned from everything that has occurred this fall and we won’t have any repeats of parties and a rise in cases. I hope that the school will continue to enforce the rules and CDC guidelines and students who chose to break them will be reprimanded.” 

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