STEM student Elizabeth Sorells shares her prediction on health crisis

STEM student Elizabeth Sorells shares her prediction on health crisis

With the COVID-19 pandemic currently affecting WNMU and its community, The Mustang Staff reached out to members of the Mustang family to understand their thoughts on the current situation of the world.

Elizabeth Sorells is a Silver City native who is double majoring in Mathematics and Forest Wildlife, currently a junior, Sorells is a math tutor at the Global Resource Center. 

Q: How has the COVID-19 crisis affected your life? What future effects can you predict, whether they happen in days, weeks, months, or years? Why?
A: The COVID-19 crisis has affected my life in several ways. The first issue that came up was when the school moved to all online. I am in a biology-based degree, so all of my classes usually are face to face. We have labs that involve using specimens for studying and going out into the field for many of our labs and classroom activities. While possible to teach my biology courses online, it has made me feel like my quality of education will be less than what it was when we were attending classes face to face. I know that many students feel the same way.

With my other degree in math, our department had a very smooth transition into moving online because many of the professors already have experience and teach many online classes already. Our math tutors also transitioned to tutoring online through Zoom, so thankfully, I didn’t have to worry about my math courses. I have two jobs on campus, so not knowing whether or not I would be able to work to still have a source of income was a bit scary, and thankfully both have found ways in which I can still work from home.

The future effects I predict will occur within the next few weeks is that students, including myself, will feel a lack of motivation to try to complete their coursework and attend classes online. Taking online courses takes a lot of motivation and self-discipline, and I understand people’s frustration about moving to this format. For many courses in STEM, the welding and electrical programs, and the art programs, it is difficult and nearly impossible to replicate what we would typically do in a lab where we use hands-on learning, so I can only imagine the frustration felt by the students and the stress of transitioning to online for professors.

I understand the reasoning for extreme measures being taken, and I hope this passes by us all quickly so we can get back to our lives. I am thankful for everyone’s hard work in helping us students try to transition online and for being empathetic and understanding at such a difficult time.

To learn more about how WNMU is affected by COVID-19, please visit http://wnmu.edu/covid-19-updates.