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Are you ready? Students discuss excitement, concerns for next year

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Students outside union

After three semester of abnormal education, many students are ready for things to return to normal.

OSU students share their hopes and concerns for going back to ‘normal’ as classes are predicted to be packed in Fall 2021. 

The difficulties of online school remain prominent, even to the end of the spring semester, both socially and academically. Students have grown used to the speed of campus, and making the change to fully in-person lectures will force students to readjust once again. 

“I’m kind of nervous about having a ton of people on campus. I think it’s going to be a little overwhelming for everybody. I know mental health isn’t super great right now. I was able to manage, but there was definitely a lot of added stress,” Alexis Maynard, a junior in strategic communications, said. 

While online school has granted students some flexibility in their attendance and workload, many have felt more inclined to dismiss classwork altogether. Some believe the many distractions they faced this semester will dissipate with in-person classes, helping them to stay focused on their work and remain accountable. 

“I think it will be better for the campus and for the students,” Caitlin Wardour, nutritional sciences sophomore, said. “ I know online classes have been hard for some people to stay motivated to even get on classes or study. I know it’s been really hard for me. I’m ready for in-person classes because then I have to go. They take attendance and that’s part of my grade,” 

Aside from motivation, students may find themselves accomplishing more when doing things in person, which could potentially aid the mental health struggle spike to decrease in the fall semester.

“I am actually ready for in person. I feel like I get more done and learn more in a physical classroom. It will be a lot easier in my opinion,” Austin Olivas, sports management junior, said. 

The uncertainty of the pandemic not only changed the way OSU students learn, but the overall first impression that freshman had of college. First-year students are eager to see the reality of the ‘college experience’ at OSU, especially in the social aspect.

“I’m excited to have more opportunities to meet people. I think Covid made it difficult to make connections with people,” Erin Dornan, aviation management and aerospace security freshman, said. 

The question of whether masks are going to be required to attend class remains unanswered, and some students worry that the desire for normalcy might raise more health concerns. 

“It makes me a little nervous because  I’ve personally been fully vaccinated and then I’m very cautious about that kind of thing. I know some other universities are requiring students to be fully vaccinated for the fall, and I think I might be a little more comfortable if everyone was vaccinated in in-person classes, but I don’t know if they are going to be able to make that a requirement. So I’m a little nervous,” Maynard said.