Montclair State University students are sharing their perspectives on returning to campus for in-person learning after taking hybrid courses for the past year during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Some students are expressing concerns and mixed emotions regarding being back on campus.
Ivanuska Bailon, a junior physics major, expressed how she feels about being back at the university.
“I’m nervous and excited,” Bailon said. “Nervous because of COVID-19 and also the delta [variant]. Excited because I’m finally going to in-person class and all of my classes are in person.”
Isabel Castello, a junior family science and human development major, also shared her excitement about in-person courses.
“I’m so excited to come back to campus,” Castello said. “Along with excitement, I am a bit nervous because we will be around more people. Supposedly, we’re all vaccinated in order to go [and] be on campus. The part that makes me nervous is that I heard from other students that they have waived that option. I respect everyone’s opinions, but at the end of the day, I just hope we are all healthy and safe.”
For some, being on campus feels like returning to the pre-pandemic life.
Kayla Acensios, a junior family science and human development major, expressed that she is looking forward to in-person learning.
“Although I’m taking hybrid courses, being able to go back to campus is a relief,” Acensios said. “I haven’t been on campus since the pandemic started because of the fact that all my classes have been all online. I’m very excited to finally be able to go to campus again and get some type of normalcy back.”
As students return to campus, they are expected to continue following safety precautions to avoid spreading the virus.
Acensios also shared her expectations as a student regarding the safety protocols for this academic term.
“[Maintaining] the six feet distancing is still in effect,” Acensios said. “Just because the virus is still out there and I wouldn’t want everything to shut down again. ”
The Montclair State community is hoping that the administration shares new updates with everyone as soon as they make any decisions and, as Castello points out, that they do not wait until the last minute to communicate important announcements.
“One thing I do hope is for the school to communicate with us and also be ready to make quick decisions if they end up noticing an outburst on campus,” Castello said.