Spring Semester Sparks New Expectations Among Students and Staff

Photo by Francesca Prado

By Bri Carr, Staff Writer-

With the Fall 2020 semester finishing, Spring 2021 is in the forefront of students’ minds with expectations for the semester, after weeks filled with uncertainty, anxiousness and accommodating to unfamiliar health guidelines due to Covid-19.

This semester flooded students with unexpected changes such as a transition to online classes, social distancing and cancelation of numerous campus events, on top of the usual stress of deadlines and assignments.

“This semester, I’ve had one student survive a suicide attempt and another student hospitalized for mental health reasons.” Said Megan Denton Ray, and English professor at UTC.

Denton-Ray also described how some staff members have did not keep their students’ health in mind this past semester, even during unaccustomed circumstances and appealed for empathy from faculty.

“My hope for next semester is that instructors in STEM classes stop putting ridiculous, unrealistic expectations on students. I’ve heard of TA’s having to track attendance via as student’s GPA coordinates…Next semester, I hope more instructors make sure their students known that the first priority, always, is for all of us to survive this madness. More kindness, empathy, compassion please.”

“My hope for next semester is that instructors in STEM classes stop putting ridiculous, unrealistic expectations on students. I’ve heard of TA’s having to track attendance via as student’s GPA coordinates…next semester, I hope more instructors make sure their students known that the first priority, always, is for all of us to survive this madness. More kindness, empathy, compassion please.”

With this semester coming to an end and Spring coming soon, there are many hopes and expectations that students are looking forward to.

UTC sophomore, Mary Black discussed the issues she faced this semester with demanding professors and what she wished the university understood about students.

“I hope that UTC tries their best to remember that we are taking this just as hard as professors are and they should keep our mental health in mind….my classes have been harder because they’re all online but so many of my professors choose to not try and understand things like technical issues where sometimes my laptop decides to not work for me or that I am having to work many more hours because [of] Covid,” Black said.

Although the upcoming semester will not include a spring break, students at UTC only strive to be heard and understood by professors and other faculty members. To view the university’s Spring 2021 calendar, click here.

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