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  • Sincerely, Southern

Steps taken to enforce COVID regulations

By Tyler Miller

Photo courtesy of Daniel Yonto

Georgia Southern University has placed campus-wide restrictions to prevent further spread of the coronavirus.

These restrictions include desks being six feet apart, masks being required to be worn on buses and on campus and seats in the dining hall being spread out. They also include a certain number of people being allowed to sit in and eat at the campus Starbucks and campus Chick-Fil-A.

Students and professors at the university both have gone through different experiences when it comes to these restrictions. They all face different hardships and struggles when it comes to the restrictions that are in place on campus. They voiced their opinions on how it’s affected them and their school life, and how it really took a toll on how they have had to adjust to it.

Daniel Yonto, a Geography professor at the university, said that the restrictions the university has put in place due to covid, has really affected his teaching. He talked about how he likes to have his classes do in-class activities so they can interact with one another, and it helps him expand on those topics in a more fun and interactive way. But he said that COVID-19 has restricted any activity as to where they wouldn’t be able to maintain social distance, and it makes his classes mainly lecture based. He finished this first point by saying that he finds that his classes work best when they are half lecture based and half activity based. But the covid restrictions on not being able to do in person activities, and the restrictions on how many students are allowed in the classroom at one time, really made it tough for his classes.

He also said it impacted his teaching because he now has to teach hybrid classes. He said for his classes, a group of students comes to class in person once a week to learn, and the rest of the week they’re on their own with online material. He said that students reviewing the material on their own, has its consequences. He said one of the consequences of knowing the restrictions, is that he can’t force his students to attend class. He also said he can’t force students to review the material at home either. Then he talked about the struggle of attendance and the restrictions when it comes to the material. “So, 0 enforcement to attend class and 0 enforcement to review the materials equals not much learning,” said Yonto. He then said he sees that trend in his hybrid classes, and suggested either making all classes in person which you can’t do with large classes like his because of social distancing, or have the entire class online. He finished by saying that making entire classes online is rare because the university only lets 15% of classes be fully online.

Teaching has been seriously affected by the covid restrictions that the university has put in place since last August when everyone returned to campus. It’s made it insanely tough on how professors can operate their classrooms and how many students they can allow at one time. But when it comes to students, they experience different things when it comes to the restrictions.

Emily Vonck, a student at the university, said that the covid restrictions have really affected how she has been able to enjoy the normal college experience. She talked about how before covid happened and before the restrictions were put in place, she was able to enjoy the experience and hang out with her friends on campus with no issues. She added that now with the restrictions, it has made it tough to hang out with people and do certain things. She finished by saying with the vaccine out and the university administering it, maybe next semester she can enjoy a normal year again.

When it comes to students and these restrictions that the university has put in place, it was different versus the experience that professors had. It was tough on both students and the professors at the university, but they both faced different hardships. It is different for everybody when it comes to how the university was able to put strict restrictions in place.

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