Vanderbilt must be based on its current COVID-19 policy – Vanderbilt Hustler
Vanderbilt must be based on its current COVID-19 policy – Vanderbilt Hustler

Vanderbilt must be based on its current COVID-19 policy – Vanderbilt Hustler

Vanderbilt’s inflexible pursuit of personal learning leaves quarantined students stranded without academic support. It’s time to open Zoom classes for those who need them.

One month into the spring semester of 2022, signs of the pandemic are slowly disappearing from Vanderbilt’s campus. The mask policies are more relaxed, collection restrictions have been lifted, and these “anchor down, step up” squirrel yard signs have finally disappeared from Vanderbilt’s sidewalks. Last weekend, Alumni Lawn was filled with students enjoying the first signs of spring.

It is worth repeating that navigating college in the middle of COVID-19 is not easy. While we appreciate Vanderbilt’s commitment to preserving student life in the midst of the pandemic, aspects of this semester’s COVID-19 protocols have left us deeply puzzled. Namely, in its most daring step towards normality, students have heard that the university has reportedly prohibited hybrid teaching for all courses, unless a professor himself tests positive for COVID-19.

In an email received by The Hustler, a professor from the Department of European Studies wrote that “the faculty has been informed by the dean that students are not allowed to attend classes virtually (even if a faculty member approves such a move).” A number of other Hustler employees have received emails with similar content.

The ban on hybrid teaching was never fully communicated to the students. At the very least, we ask for transparency and clear communication of policies that affect our ability to keep up with the rates if we were to test positive for COVID-19.

“Students in quarantine and isolation should contact their instructors to discuss a plan to access class materials and make up for lost work,” University Health and Safety protocolslast up to date January 21, read. “The faculty will work with students, as they do other times when a student misses teaching due to a medical condition.”

But COVID-19 is not like other medical conditions, and students who test positive do not get the support they need. Some professors have, with great personal risk, defied the university and created secret Zoom links for students with COVID-19. Most, however, are not so accommodating. For example, a professor from the Department of Chemistry told students that they should contact the Khan Academy if they are in quarantine.

Obtaining courses after being sick is something none of us want to go through, yet has this nightmare become a forced reality for many students? in the Vanderbilt community.

Vanderbilt’s current COVID-19 policy is dependent on a system of honor. Fully vaccinated and boosted individuals, who currently include about 96% of the campus community, is exempt from mandatory test. If these individuals develop COVID-19 symptoms, they may choose to be tested externally. If they test positive, they are expected to report their result via one web form.

With the knowledge that self-reporting a positive test means they have to miss teaching for a week, students who hide their COVID-19 test results are not unheard of.

“I’ve been sick of teaching many times this year – not sure if I had Covid – because I could not handle the logistical nightmares of losing class,” a Hustler reader commented on a Feb. 7 issue. Article. Why should I pay extra tuition for a sound system teachers can’t use? ”

Without a reporting system that ensures accountability, it is difficult to capture potential COVID-19 outbreaks once they begin. According to NPR, recently proof indicates that future waves of COVID-19 will be less deadly and disruptive. However possibility developing serious complications due to the disease is still far too real for some in the Vanderbilt community. Vanderbilt’s fixation on personal learning alleviates the concerns of those most vulnerable to COVID-19. Although we value the face-to-face interactions that personal classes offer, Vanderbilt should still leave Zoom open to some of its students.

When Sophomore Meaghan Kilnera surviving blood cancer and a former Hustler staff writer, requested the university and asked for accommodation to study at a distance until she, after the top of the omicron variant, received a brief response from Student Access Friday night before the first week of classes, Jan 18. Her petition was rejected on the grounds that “the housing experience is an integral part of the bachelor’s education at Vanderbilt.”

“Survivors of blood cancer do not answer so robust to the vaccine, “Kilner said.” When omicron is so transmissible, it’s very scary to be on campus. At home, I wanted to be closer to my doctors. ”

That Student Access Services Office had promised Kilner that they would offer her accommodation, such as having a seat six feet away from other students in the class, KN95 masks and a pre-order system for campus dining. Kilner expressed that her experiences do not live up to these promises.

“I came to my first class [of the semester], and there was no way for me to be six feet away from people, ”Kilner said. “In a number of my classes, I have a chair in the back – I do not even have a desk.”

It is not the case that the university does not have the opportunity to open hybrid opportunities for students with COVID-19. If a professor gets COVID-19, they are allowed to go over to Zoom lectures. Why is there a double standard between housing offers for professors and offers for sick students?

The last two years have forced us all to confront the maze of online communication tools. Now, most students and professors are finally confident in navigating the hybrid learning environment. Vanderbilt’s decision to remove hybrid learning from everyone makes us feel that the hassle of adapting to new technologies was for nothing.

Let’s be genuine. We all miss face-to-face interactions. Yet the threat from COVID-19 is still very real, especially for those who are immunocompromised. The university’s inflexible pursuit of personal learning leaves many students stranded without academic or social support. Vanderbilt will offer more resources to quarantined students. First, start by opening Zoom.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.