Two New Hampshire Colleges Already Making Major Changes
Welp, that semester at school was a quickie.
I make the joke, but it's not funny and I'm not at all trying to turn a serious situation into a comedy article. It's just crazy that not even 14 days into the spring semester starting again, and MAJOR changes are already on the way to UNH in Durham and Franklin Pierce University in Rindge.
We'll start with UNH first, where apparently positive COVID cases QUINTUPLED (that's the term for when something multiplies by 5, right?) in the span of SIX DAYS. According to WMUR, there were only 17 reported positive cases on February 4. That number rocketed up to 82 just six days later on February 10.
A further report from our hyper-local Seacoast news site, Seacoast Current, goes on to say that the status of the campus has officially been changed from "yellow" to "orange," which carries more restrictions. On top of that, spectators WILL NOT be allowed for the UNH Men's Hockey game tonight at the Whitt, and gatherings are limited to six or less people. The transition to online classes kicked in last night at 6p.
Over in Rindge at Franklin Pierce, something much different is going on. According to WMUR, while there aren't as many positive cases as at UNH (Franklin Pierce has only 33 compared to the aforementioned 82 -- although that 33 includes a 24-hour jump from 15), they're going into a lockdown of sorts, ordering a shelter-in-place that kicks off in an hour (at the time of this writing).
The shelter-in-place will last for 10 days and include only remote learning classes, with athletics being suspended as well as closure to all studios, labs, and the library. On top of that, meal delivery from off-campus has been suspended as well, with students only being allowed to pick up their meals from the dining hall in a takeout type situation.
I can't really put into words how horrible I feel for any college kids these days. It's so stereotypical to say that "college was the best four years of my life," but I seriously can't scream that from the top of Mt. Washington enough -- or maybe I should say the Great Blue Hill since that was right near the campus of my alma mater, Curry College.
But seriously -- college is supposed to be when you fully discover yourself and what it's like to be on your own. Make stupid mistakes. Learn. Enjoy the last 4 years you have legitimately living with your best friends (assuming you live on campus) before you enter the real world and things change drastically. I mean, yeah, ideally you pick up a solid education while you're there, too, but college is SO MUCH MORE than just an education and a degree.
This generation of college kids is getting robbed of that. I mean, not even being allowed to order takeout? TAKEOUT IS A TRADITION AS A COLLEGE KID. You're SUPPOSED to get the Freshman 15 from ordering too much pizza between Thursday night and Sunday afternoon! And don't get me wrong, I'm not condemning Franklin Pierce for their decisions -- I get it. I totally understand.
But it doesn't change the fact that I still feel terribly for today's college students. Hang in there dudes and dudettes -- this will all get better at some point. It HAS to.