UNC Students Face One Year of COVID

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A UNC campaign has encouraged students to spread mask positivity. Facial coverings are required in University buildings and while outside in groups.

This March marks one year since life at the University of Northern Colorado was changed by COVID. During this time, events around campus were canceled or postponed, and in-person classes had to change to being remote.

Around this time last year, some students were happy that COVID-19 was coming to Colorado. There were students who would loudly cough in the dorm common areas to give faculty the idea that they were sick. Some students were excited to be home for longer than just a week for spring break, but they quickly realized that they did not enjoy learning remotely.

“It was very stressful,” said Soledad Almanza, a second-year audiology major at UNC. “I had never had any online classes before, so I didn’t have anybody to guide me.”

Online schooling took many students aback. While some assumed that it would be easier because they were able to go to school on their own schedule, many were having trouble moving from hands-on learning to learning from presentations online. One of these students was Denisse Hernandez, a second-year health and human services major at UNC.

“I’ve been taking online classes since last spring, and I feel like I haven’t been learning,” Hernandez said.

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Many people do not understand how hard remote learning can be. Even those who chose to go to school online are having trouble getting accustomed to remote learning, like author Hank Green.

Although UNC does have some classes offered as an in-person and online hybrid, students miss many of the amenities that come with being completely in-person, such as quick responses from teachers, connections with classmates, and overall help with the course.

“It sucks because you do have your classmates, but you don’t know them,” Hernandez said.

UNC has stated that it is planning on returning to fully in-person learning in the fall semester of 2021. With this prospect, some students are happy to move away from their computers and back to the classroom.

“I wouldn’t do online anymore, ever,” Hernandez said.

While this year in the pandemic has affected students’ learning, it has also affected events that typically happen around campus. On March 16, 2020, President Andy Feinstein announced that all events and meetings at UNC would be canceled for the remainder of the spring semester. This included end-of-year traditions, such as the annual lu’au.

“I miss the welcoming week, the football games, the hockey games,” Almanza said. “I can’t just choose one because there are just too many.”

Many events are still postponed. Sports did not resume until November, and UNC’s football team just played their first game in February at the University of Idaho.

“I just feel bad for the freshmen that didn’t get to experience that because that was the light of my freshman year,” Almanza said.

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