These days, there is so much uncertainty surrounding what the future holds. But, one thing that is certain is that everyone is looking forward to the days when we can laugh together, hug one another, and be together. For many, this takes place on colleges campuses.
Due to the virus, colleges around the world have shut down, sent students home, and moved instruction to an exclusively online platform. As someone who is experiencing the instructor and student side of things simultaneously, this shift has not been an easy one. I’m thankful for platforms like Zoom that allow for us to see one another and our students when “in class” but nothing beats face-to-face instruction. Prior to this, I had never been enrolled in an online course. Now, I’m taking four and teaching two! Being adaptable and allowing grace for both myself and my students is something that I’ve been consciously working on throughout the past month.
While VT has made the decision to be online for the summer term, there is still so much uncertainty surrounding what the fall semester looks like. Everyone wants to be back to in-person instruction. But, with such a large student population will we be able to maintain social distancing? What would re-opening mean for students who have been living outside of the state of Virginia? Will Lane Stadium shake as we jump to Enter Sandman? These questions, and so many more are questions that both myself and Hokies around the world are asking themselves.
I’m optimistic that we will be back together in the fall, but if nothing else, this semester has taught me the importance of having clear expectations for both myself and my students, and improvements that I can make both now and in the future to my teaching style and classroom environment.