Editor's note: This is part of a contributed collection of students and faculty experience with COVID-19.
As the pandemic arrived in the United States, many universities scrambled to transfer half a semester's worth of material online.
At Iowa State, the online portion of the semester was supposed to last until the beginning of April.
Michael Hurst is a senior in civil engineering and said his professors are his largest help throughout the online class transition, as they check in on their students to note progress and provide assistance when needed.
“They’re going out of their way to get course material [online], and check up on me if I’m having troubles,” Hurst said. “But, [online classes] aren’t really a problem for me; I’m just in my room doing homework.”
However, Hurst said the worst part for him is not being able to see his friends or classmates in person, but it isn’t the worst thing to be happening right now. Something that surprised him was seeing everyone adapt so well and work together to make the remaining semester the best it could possibly be.
He also enjoys spending time with his family as he has moved back home for the time being, and still fulfills his social needs by video calling his friends. He is reassured knowing everyone is communicating with each other even more.
On the bright side for Hurst, he said he feels he is learning better in his large lecture classes online than he would’ve in person.
“Usually in a big lecture hall, I get lost in class or doze off for some parts,” Hurst said. “Now that it’s all online, anything that I miss I can go back and check on it, and I also have friends I can check in with for help too.”