Living in a world where online learning is the new norm has taught me a lot about myself. But it came with challenges.
The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted students by relying on online classes during the last part of the 2019-2020 school year and the 2020-2021 year. As someone who likes being at home and not around large crowds, online learning was something that appeared to be within my comfort zone.
Entering my second year of the Journalism program last fall, I wasn’t worried about taking all of my classes online. I thought it would make things personally for me easier. Last year, going to school at Humber’s North campus wasn’t easy. School on campus and then going to work didn’t leave much time to work on assignments.
Online learning allowed me to wake up five minutes before class starts and attend in pyjamas. It was as simple as turning on the laptop and logging into the Zoom meeting for class.
You didn’t have wake up two hours early to get dressed, have breakfast and then take the TTC to make it on time for school.
But as this year progressed, I started to feel a bit overwhelmed and stressed because of the school workload and assignment deadlines jammed close together.
I realized that online is not what I thought it was going to be.
In the classroom you have yourself, classmates and the teacher. Online learning in the comfort of my own bedroom meant that I can easily get distracted with being on my phone, having the TV on and without a teacher being in front of me, I can browse the internet on my laptop.
This past semester, the workload was a lot but manageable compared to the fall semester. It was tough because I was dealing with problems with my roommate and his daughter living with me at the time and then finding out that my grandmother on my dad’s side passed away from a stroke on Easter weekend.
Dealing with life and having difficulties in some classes, the stress started to get to me and it turned into self-doubt, thinking that I wouldn’t successfully make it to the end of this school year.
I do love to have time for myself as I prefer that, but with online learning I realized how important it is being on campus, the interaction with classmates and friends. Having an in-person one-on-one with an instructor is better than being shown remotely where I need to improve in assignments.
And strangely, being away from the school made me realize how much I miss sacrificing myself by taking the TTC to school.
Throughout this past year living in a pandemic, and all of the obstacles I had to overcome, remote learning taught me that no matter what challenge I may face, I will never give up and keep fighting. This is temporary.
I have become a lot stronger because of online learning. I learned to take one day at a time and not put so much expectation and pressure on myself. In doing that, things became easier. Those are lessons I will take with me to my final year and future career.