Penn State Students Grapple with Cancelled Semester, Postponed Graduation

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When you go to college you look forward to the graduation ceremony.
Penn State Seniors will miss that experience, due to the coronavirus outbreak.

On March 12th Penn State cancelled in-person classes for, March 16th through April 6th.
With the virus continuing to spread throughout the state the university decided to extend that cancellation.

Penn State, Public Relations Professor, Renea Nichols has been teaching her class on the video call “Zoom” since Penn State canceled in person classes.

Her class is all Seniors, many of which are out of state, staying at home.

Wednesday, Penn State announced the rest of the Spring Semester will done through remote instruction, and graduation has been postponed.

“I’m really shocked, I never like foresaw this happening at all, especially you know, it’s all of our Senior year,” Victoria Koerber, Penn State Student, said.

Professor Nichols says this is uncharted territory for everyone.

“I handled the discussion question for all of them and they’ve been so amazingly open about their feelings and stuff and I think that’s a very important thing that they just continue to talk about what they’re feeling and know that whatever you’re feeling, just feel it,” Nichols, said.

Some students say they won’t be able to come to their postponed graduation ceremony.

“I have a job and I start in mid August, and I just know for sure that if graduation’s any later than the beginning of August, I won’t be coming back,” Elizabeth Molek, Penn State Student, said. “I think I have to work like three months before I get my first day off.”

Christine Cai, a Penn State Student, currently living at home in New Jersey says frightened about job prospects, based on the current economy.

“I had this whole plan of going to our career fairs that Bellisario offers, but they all got canceled, but fortunately the career people are really and they’re trying to help us,” Cai, said.

She says the College of Communications sent out a remote guidebook for students to contact employers.

“They sent out a remote guidebook or something the other day for us to contact the employers, but I’m still really worried what the economy will hold and everything, because it’s pretty scary stuff that’s happening right now,” Cai, said.

Students in need of money can apply for emergency assistance through Penn State’s student care and advocacy emergency fund.

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