For College-Bound Seniors, From On-Campus to Online Learning


Karen Portillo, Staff Writer

Every high school senior looks forward to living the college experience. From moving in to your first college dorms to joining sororities, college is a new adventure almost every high school student anticipates. But for seniors this year, normal graduations have been postponed, senior trips, banquets, and prom have been cancelled.

And some seniors are facing another obstacle in their journey: encountering remote learning during their summer term in college.

The following colleges and universities have decided to turn to remote learning for their summer term:

  • University of South Florida
  • University of Central Florida
  • University of Florida
  • Florida State University
  • Florida International University
  • Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University
  • Palm Beach State College
  • University of North Florida
  • Florida Gulf Coast University

Jennica Augustin is a senior who has committed to attend USF on June 29th for her Summer B term. After learning that she would have to take her summer classes online, she felt financially relieved but also devastated about not being able to attend her dream school as promised.

“I won’t lie and say that I’m happy about the transition to online courses. I’m disappointed that my first semester of college is going to be drastically different from what I imagined, but I understand and respect the decision. I am worried because I’m a visual learner and I understand more when I’m being taught face-to-face. I think that this transition from remote learning at Santaluces to remote learning at USF will be extremely difficult for me, but I’m hopeful everything will become easier after a few weeks or so,” said Augustin.

Alongside USF, UCF has also decided to turn onto online learning in hopes of protecting its students during this global pandemic. UCF instructor, Jules Caynton teaches an intensive English program for foreign students.

“It’s definitely changed a lot of things. We all have to have computers and sit on a live zoom meeting for four hours, both teachers and students. We had to completely change our curriculum and test/grading system. We didn’t teach for a whole month so that the administrators could recreate the entire program, and even after we started teaching again it still had so many problems. it’s technically only a part-time position, but we had to train pretty much full time for two weeks leading up to our classes starting up again,” said Caynton.

Unlike other students, senior Vanessa Castellano intentionally decided to sign up for online classes during the summer before the crisis even reached the United States.

“I chose to do online classes because I wanted to get a jumpstart on my academic career in college. Choosing online classes for the summer as opposed to taking classes at UCF was mainly due to the reason that I still wanted to be with my family during my final summer before college. Also, I have always liked online classes. Being able to pace myself and do assignments at my own speed is something I love. The feeling of being able to finish an assignment ahead of time in the leisure of my own home without being burnt out by walking around campus is truly refreshing,” said Castellano.

Dylan Rodriguez was accepted into Florida State University’s CARE Program early this year. When accepted, this program urges its participants to attend FSU in the summer term in hopes of helping them settle into college with ease.

“Well I’m actually very bummed about the whole thing. Since I’m in the CARE Program, I was promised a personal experience that would set me up for a more comfortable and secure transition from high school to a university, but I feel like I was unfortunately robbed of that. I was hoping for a new experience where I could gain more independence and have a more hands-on college experience. My expectations were honestly very high, so to have all that I looked forward to kind of just switched really makes me sad. Although I do understand the circumstances of everything right now, I can’t help but think about the “what-ifs.” I will obviously try my hardest in my online classes but it just won’t be the same as to have the chance to be there in person with a new surrounding and stage in my life,” said Dylan.

Amongst all the devastation students are facing, many colleges are also facing a setback. Many institutions are worried about their enrollment numbers decreasing which will cause less funding. As of now, around 20 million students attend a public or private, two or four-year, college or university. The council has predicted that by next year, enrollment will drop by 15% and 25% for international students.



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