Back to School- An Overview

Written by on August 25, 2020

Welcome back Coyotes to a world of false security, sports and activities almost as usual, and an ‘ineffective’ mask order! Now hear me out- masks can and do prevent the spread of COVID-19; but are usually more effective when students don’t congregate in the cafeteria eating, breathing, and talking all together. Kansas Wesleyan has done its best to combat the coronavirus- adding social distancing, more cleaning products to all classrooms, and options for online classes in worst case scenarios.

There is only one major problem. We, the United States of America, are still in the middle of a pandemic.

This is a harsh reality that some people seem to be forgetting. People are dying every single day from an invisible, easily transmittable virus that came out of the blue from a seemingly far off land. And yet, American citizens are still choosing to attend house parties. It is no secret that colleges are not exactly the safest places to be right now; and students are attempting to figure out how to navigate both a pandemic and early adulthood all while also doing homework. This is a dark and unique time in history, but what better time to become an adult with a degree?

As of last week, KWU has positive cases on campus. But what does this mean for the rest of the semester? Will we be on campus, in person for much longer? It seems like an impending doom quickly approaching especially for passionately academic students. KWU set a precedent last semester by allowing students to stay in the dorms and continuing to provide meals for on campus students even in the middle of a pandemic. Hopefully this will continue to be upheld this semester and next. This sense of security helped many students continue their education both this year and last.

We can only hope for the best for anyone quarantined or COVID-19 positive on campus.

So how can students continue with a sense of normalcy and education in the middle of a pandemic? This question seems to be left up to the students individually. It is important to stay vigil and on track during this time. Keeping up with classwork and mental health/self care is going to be an ongoing mission for this entire year. Some students are doing their best to simply stay afloat during this uncertain time, but others seem to be thriving. Hopefully the staff and professors of KWU will take the unique circumstances of this year into consideration with everything from attendance to traditional class trips.

Partially online classes are a new world to navigate and those students who are tech-savvy are doing remarkably well through this transition. Microsoft Teams is the new platform the school has decided to go ahead with this year for students in quarantine and the assumption is that if all classes were to go online this platform would also be used. It is overall pretty simple to use (either on your cell phone or laptop) and adjust to for both students and faculty.

The uncertainty about athletics, theatre, choir, and all other campus activities is something on everyone’s mind. The only thing possible at the moment is to trek on with the assumption that these things will continue until further notice. One of the best pieces of advice I have heard throughout this year was- do not have expectations and you will be pleasantly surprised.

So while college campuses are not inherently an incredibly safe place to be right now, I am personally thrilled to be back on campus and in Salina despite everything. I know this world of in person classes and interactions could be temporary but I am happy to be experiencing it and the opportunities everyday.

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