Samantha Hart and Gabriella Squitieri
Lifestyle Editor and Guest Writer
Special to The Equinox
Fairleigh Dickinson University, like many other universities, has canceled on-campus activities and has moved classes online for the remainder of the spring semester due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Students are experiencing a wide range of emotions regarding this change and to social-distancing measures.
“I feel that I am missing out on the full college experience,” said Lauren Marks, a freshman art major. “I can’t attend campus events, see my friends, or use all the resources I need for my classes.”
Some students see flaws in the school’s handling of this crisis.
“A simple email saying they were figuring it out would have been useful,” said Deborah Epps, a junior biology major. “As a student that lives four hours away, my family and I needed answers.”
This process is confusing for both students and professors.
“Some of my professors don’t know how to work online classes and are not well equipped,” said Tristen Valerio, a psychology major. “For one of my classes, we have not had a class yet.”
Yet some professors have been very helpful.
“My professors have also been understanding when it comes to any anxiety we may have due to the circumstances,” Marks said.
Marks said the professors have been very helpful– despite not being able to provide art supplies.
Outside of the classroom, students like Jenna Henderson, a junior in the Quest Education program, are remaining positive about the COVID-19 outbreak. Many are using social media apps and FaceTime to bridge the gap back to normalcy.
“I’m reaching out to friends from school and from home,” Henderson said. “I’m sending TikToks and Instagram posts and stuff like that to people if it reminds me of them to try and keep lighthearted during this weird challenging time.”
In the transition to moving classes online, FDU has made an effort to make it as smooth as possible.
“The university has been handling the situation very effectively,” said Donald Mane, a sophomore communications major. “They have been consistently communicating with us via email and keeping us up to date on information that we have to know, as well as informing us of the resources that are available to all of the students.”
Students Reacted Positively to Pass/Fail Grade Option
“I was very grateful that they [FDU] did not hesitate to offer that, as I know universities who did not and students were very upset,” Valerio said. “I will be using the pass/fail option for certain classes that I may not do as well in.”
Yet difficulties remain.
“One of my concerns is receiving feedback on our work,” said Nancy Sanchez, a sophomore communications major. “For the midterms, they just posted the grades directly to WebAdvisor. We missed the personal conferences so we don’t really know how we’re doing in the class.”
In these difficult times, students are finding relationships with family and friends much more important. Henderson has been at home with her mother during the daytime and helping out with her grandparents while making sure to maintain her distance.
“We are doing some grocery shopping for my grandparents as well because they don’t want to risk anything,” Henderson said.
This story was written for COMM 3835 – Advanced News Reporting.
- Read our coverage on the institution of a pass/fail option.