The age of online education

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Crowder helps students through COVID-19 pandemic

Although many students are taking advantage of the technological era and taking online classes, many other students continue to utilize traditional seated classrooms.

Locally, the Crowder College Cassville campus has shifted all of its classrooms to online during the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.

Angela Seymour, director of the Cassville campus, said some classes found it easier than others to transfer to online only.

“The classes that were harder in the transition were lab classes and things that require hands-on experience,” she said. “Teachers are working hard to make the transition easier on the students.”

Even after a rough start, the process is getting easier.

“As everyone gets used to it, it gets better,” Seymour said. “Some teachers are using Zoom or other platforms to reach their students.”

Wi-Fi is available to all students in the parking lot, and there are other areas in town that are offering access to the internet.

“Teachers are coordinating with each other to make each class better,” Seymour said. “Every class has different needs. Teachers are being more forgiving in areas they can and alternating grading methods.”

Seymour said the teaches have been incredible throughout this event.

“As long as the students communicate with us, we can figure anything out,” she said. “I appreciate how hard everyone is working, we know it is hard and stressful.”

It was a sad realization that there would not be a graduation ceremony.

“We are still enrolling and are still available by phone, so if you call the campus, the call will be forwarded to someone,” Seymour said. “SSS is also continuing to reach out.”

Crowder is trying to continue to find ways to make the situation as normal as possible for the staff and the students.

“The summer sessions will be 100 percent online,” she said. “And, there is collaborative teaching with other campuses to make the experience as effective as possible for the students.”

The last half of the spring semester, Crowder admin, staff and students have been doing their best and figuring out a way to deal with this pandemic, but they are ready for the summer semester.

“We have tremendous students,” Seymour said. “Crowder has already reimbursed dorm students based on a percentage of time left, and we have waived all online fees for the summer courses.”

If students are struggling, they should always reach out.

“Especially during this time, we are being proactive in contacting students, but we are always available to them,” she said. “Crowder admin supports everything that people are doing in finding ways to be flexible and helpful.

“We understand how hard this is on our teachers and students, there are so many more stressors than normal at this time. We want to help, don’t suffer alone, reach out to someone.”

Crowder has a food bank run out of Neosho, but Cassville students are accepted. Information is available on the Crowder website, or students can call an advisor or the campus.

Also, it is important for nursing students to remember applications come out on May 1.

“We are really impressed that our students keep going and continue to work through this pandemic,” Seymour said. “Be successful, be healthy, and take care of yourselves.”

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