Thoughts from UWT students

With only five classes on campus this quarter, UW Tacoma students have not been able to experience the traditional campus life that UWT normally has to offer. A couple of first-year students, along with a senior, offered their thoughts regarding their campus experience so far and their feelings of a virtual quarter. Ezekiel Aruwah, a freshman, had a few words to speak on the issue. 

“My experience has been kind of underwhelming,” Aruwah said. “I was expecting to be able to make friends in the area by going into classes, but due to everything being virtual it’s been kind of difficult.” 

While Avery Rivers, another first-year student, shared a similar sentiment with Aruwah about not being on campus for classes, Rivers, on the other hand, found that they were able to connect with peers in at least one of her classes. 

“I love my theater class and professor, so it’s mixed feelings about this quarter,” Rivers said. “I expected a life changing new chapter, but it feels like highschool with older people. I’m a social person and I like meeting new people. I have three classes this quarter, with two of them being asynchronous, so I get to see my classmates in one of my classes.”

Without physical classes on campus, some students are finding it hard to create and stick to a schedule, especially for college first-timers. Students are also lacking social interactions with other people who are their age, and who might be just as unfamiliar or share the same anxieties about being in college. Aruwah went on to explain another of the difficulties she believes students are feeling.

“Also, the motivation to do coursework is not really there due to all the distractions that come with not being in a formal classroom setting,” Aruwah said.

Aruwah’s sentiment was similarly felt by Brandon Rosario, a last-year student, who commented about the online nature of classes and the difficulties that come with them. Rosario stated that the classes being taught online were a bit slower and more awkward in terms of communication. He said he also thinks that professors are having just as hard of a time adapting their courses as students are participating in them. 

“Teachers are having a hard time adjusting to this new format,” Rosario said. “I have seen quite a bit of reorganization from faculty that usually don’t conduct a majority of their courses online. It doesn’t seem like anything that they can’t handle, but I can definitely feel some transition issues from being in certain classes.” 

Rosario however, also mentioned that there were some positives about classes being online.

“I do enjoy being able to eat healthy food at my leisure,” Rosario said. “Even during a lecture. I also like being able to do chores during a lecture — I have wireless headphones — so there is a silver lining to all of this distance learning.”