Post-Secondary in a Pandemic
By Syd Conlin
Have you ever wondered what goes on after high school? Through the experiences of Canterbury alumni we can learn what faces us as future graduates.
Imagine you just got accepted to your top school, you're jumping with joy, but… you remember that you are in the middle of a pandemic, you start to worry not knowing what or how post secondary education will happen on top of being new to it as well.
Like most people whose school is away from their homes, they are staying at home for at least the first semester. My sister Keira Conlin was accepted to Dalhousie, which is in Halifax, Nova Scotia. I asked her: Have you ever wondered if you could get a job or continue extra curricular activities while going to college and university?
According to Keira, you can have a job and extracurricular activities while taking classes because courses are asynchronous meaning there is more flexibility in your schedule. Some of the stress is from being isolated and where you have very little communication between classmates because you aren’t in the same room and everyone is trying to find the motivation to do the work and keep on task.
The difference between high school and university?
“University is made up of a lot more heavy workload that can be more advanced and go at a faster pace at times," she said.
Matthew Vandergrift, another graduate of Canterbury, is a first-year student studying faculty of arts and science at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario. While he can see the campus building where his class normally meets, he is doing the work in the dorm.
Usually there are people sharing dorms but this year everyone gets their own, as well as you can roam around the campus. On campus you can hang with friends and help and get help together easier than if you were in your house. "University is much deeper than high school, you have to think about what and why you are do the work for the course,” Matt stated.
Another point of view is from Abigail Way. She is a 2nd-year college student in the Developmental Services Worker program at Algonquin College. She did classes on campus last year and now online this year. “I like online because I don’t have to bus for 2 hours there and 2 hours back, the full commute is 4 hours,” she said. “People that are new to the environment are going to miss out on a lot of opportunities if things are still online, a lot of real-life experiences from being in person that you can’t get over Zoom.”
Even though they are all in post-secondary they have different experiences and opinions.
Now you have some knowledge about the post-secondary life from three post-secondary students, from three different perspectives, from three different well known colleges and universities.