The current pandemic interrupted plans for universities in Idaho and the students who attend. Faculty of BYU-Idaho, Idaho State University and Boise State University changed graduation ceremonies and adjusted teaching methods. BSU decided to refunded parking permit money to students. These changes are not final as faculty continue to adapt to new regulations given by the state.
Rob Garett, the executive strategy and planning vice president, informs students that BYU-I is working hard to “adjust courses, technology, processes and a wide variety of other activities.”
BYU-I adjusted its operations according to the stay-at-home order and will follow the stages of reopening announced by Governor Brad Little on April 23. The school has provided a guideline for students to have a better experience during remote learning called Show me How to Learn Remotely. The guideline includes know your health, know your classes and know your tools.
Benjamin Sebra, a freshman studying exercise physiology, shares how his remote BYU-I experience is,
“I want to experience college I want to be on campus learning and having fun, not stuck at home doing zoom all day” Sebra said.
COVID-19 shifted on-campus learning to remote learning with students and faculty all over the world. Technology allows the University to simply switch all needed curriculum taught through zoom or recorded lessons given by professors.
Admissions offices continue to work to accommodate future and returning students. “Right now we aren’t ready to provide any ideas about what could happen with enrollment or application growth,” said Adam Ririe, the strategic enrollment officer. “Going forward we are still tracking information.”
Idaho State University in Pocatello, continues to provide protection and benefits for its students. President Kevin Satterlee created a YouTube video announcing the reopening plans for the university. The school’s goal is to reopen with full function starting in August for the upcoming fall semester, meeting all the state requirements to do so.
Idaho State and BYU-I decided to not have an in-person graduation for the Spring 2020 semester. According to ISU’s website, “We invite graduates to participate in one of our upcoming commencement ceremonies on December 12, 2020 or May 8, 2021 in Pocatello, May 10, 2021 in Boise, or a commencement date further into the future.”
According to the Q&A, Idaho State does not require its students to move out but have recommended them to return to their permanent homes. The students also will not be charged rent for the period in which they do not reside in the residence halls.
The department of public safety parking and transportation division gave students two options for refunds of their parking permits; to receive a partial refund or to donate the refund to the Student Emergency Fund.
A post on the Boise State University Facebook page shows students donating their refund money to the emergency fund, rasing $3,361. Students come together at Boise State, raising money for their fellow colleagues.
The university faculty continues to plan for reintegration for students and staff. On May 25, the university will provide more details as to what steps it will be taking in the following areas: Financial Aid, Registrar, Academic Advising, Student Financial Services, and Career Services.
The pandemic shifted normal college life to a remote college life. Universities in Idaho made quick changes within Idaho guidelines to keep students, faculty and Idaho residents safe from the coronavirus.