My Transition from Residential to Online Student

Mar. 26, 2020
Caroline Mutch

By Ashley Watson
Music major, English minor

As I’m writing this, it’s officially been a week since I received the email that on-ground classes at Brenau have been cancelled and moved online due to the Coronavirus pandemic. When I realized that on ground classes were cancelled for the whole semester I thought, like many students, that our school officials were overreacting. But that was far from the case.

Ever since that fateful Thursday, more universities have cancelled classes and reports of the panic caused by the outbreak are growing more and more alarming. Videos of customers fighting over toilet paper have become a reality. I now realize that Brenau made a smart and timely decision.

I moved back home on Sunday, March 15th and started my “school week”  that Monday. I’m so grateful that classes have been temporarily paused this week to give students the time to settle in. So far, this week has been simple. Since I major in music, I practice piano first thing in the morning. After that I start doing my job through my laptop for at least two hours. Every now and then the phone will ring as loved ones call to check on us. My school day usually finishes around 4-5 p.m. After taking a break, I resume unpacking all of my stuff until dinner time. 

Additionally, being a college student at home has its difficulties.  When I wake up I often think that I’m home on vacation, until I remember why I’m home in the first place. Since I’m used to playing on a piano my fingers now have to adjust to the keyboard that I have at home. Also everyday is spent unpacking my stuff. Usually when I come home it only takes me one or two days to finish putting away my stuff. Now the process is slower and I often don’t feel like doing it after I’ve spent all day working on important tasks. When it comes to my job, I can no longer do in person interviews which was my favorite part. 

In spite of the unforeseen challenges of this transition, I’m glad that I came home. It feels so good to be close to my family in a time like this. I can eat home cooked meals after a long day of school. I also get to spend more time with my family. I no longer have to spend two hours on the phone every weekend talking to my parents and siblings. I talk to them every day.

Even though school is still in session for me, I noticed that my stress levels have gone down. Overall I feel happier and safer.  Being safe and happy is all I could ever wish for everyone as our world goes through this scary pandemic. Although moving out was an annoyance, I am thankful that I get to spend these scary days with my loved ones – which is how you should spend everyday.

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