Penn State to Make Transition to Mostly In-Person Learning for Fall Semester
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Last week, Penn State announced that around 96% of classes offered in the fall at its University Park campus will be taught in-person.
This announcement follows a previous announcement made in February saying that the university is planning to return to in-person learning in the fall 2021 semester.
The statement outlined that, in order to return safely, the university would begin by initiating a phased return with some in-person courses to be taught over the summer.
With the COVID-19 vaccine recently becoming available to all Pennsylvania residents aged 16 and up, senior psychology major Garrett Stuck believes that a safe return to in-person learning will be good for students who may be getting tired of online classes.
“As long as it’s done safe, I think it’ll be good for people,” Stuck said. “I think we could use that, you know, especially [seeing that] a lot of kids have been unhappy with Zoom too. I think it’ll be good for the school, as long as it’s done right.”
Stuck will return to Penn State for the fall semester to complete his degree and is expecting a smooth transition as long as safety remains a priority of the university. Junior nutrition major Blair Strobel is one of those students who can’t wait to be back learning face-to-face, even though the transition may be challenging.
“It’s going to be harder, I think, because we’ve all kind of adjusted to online learning,” Strobel said. “But I think it’s definitely time, and I think it’s definitely going to be better for everybody.”
In the spirit of normalcy, Penn State recently hosted a spring football practice at Beaver Stadium in which freshmen were allowed to attend, giving those first-year students their first semblance of normal life in Happy Valley.
In a recent statement, University President Eric Barron said that making decisions for the future of the university is difficult because of the unknown nature of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, Barron also said that each and every decision that the university will make going forward will be decided upon first and foremost based on the health and safety of the Penn State community.
Matt Rudisill is a junior majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.