By Laci Sutton / Staff Writer

The 2020 school year is officially underway for Hutchinson Community College, with a few changes seen on campus. 

Thanks to the COVID-19 worldwide pandemic, masks have been made mandatory in all buildings, social distancing measures have been actively used in the classrooms, and plans for the year have been set. 

Learning has a new look on campus this year. 

The students of the HutchCC Associate Degree Nursing program are no exception. 

With a class of 40 students, social distancing has been a challenge for the program to overcome. In a normal school year, all 40 of the ADN students would be in a classroom together. Without a classroom large enough to accommodate all 40 students at a safe distance, the class has been split into two rooms. 

Thanks to modern technology, students and teachers are still able to communicate between the two rooms during class time. One instructor is in each classroom, with only one of the instructors leading the lecture for that day.

Jacob Ash is a first-year student in the HutchCC ADN program. 

“All of our classmates are coming together and we truly are making a great time out of the situation at hand,” Ash said. 

There are many unknown variables that come with going back to school in person right now, which can be scary for all involved. 

Johncie Brown is also a first-year student in the HutchCC ADN program.

“Going to school during a pandemic is exciting and worrisome at the same time.” Brown said. “I’m so happy to be in the classroom but it can be so unpredictable at times.”

In addition to the classrooms being split to accommodate social distancing measures, classrooms have also been supplied with disinfecting supplies to clean surfaces and slow the spread of germs. Students and faculty are asked to wipe down surfaces before leaving the classroom, and during class times if necessary. 

Many preventative measures have been taken but that doesn’t make HutchCC students and staff immune from contracting diseases. 

“My only concern being in the classroom is the unknown of someone being exposed.” Brown said. “It would take one student to share COVID with us and then we’d have to quarantine.”

The faculty of the HutchCC ADN program have made great efforts in ensuring their students are still receiving a quality education given less than ideal circumstances. 

“I feel more prepared because our instructors are giving us so many different resources and content to best prepare ourselves.” Brown said. “Our instructors are also very prepared for the worst case scenario.”

When change happens it often raises people’s anxiety levels. The pandemic has brought plenty of change to all aspects of day-to-day living. 

Some have referenced the changes from the pandemic as the “new normal” for the world. 

“Life is all about perception and it can greatly affect an individuals outlook on life.” Ash said. “It’s important to know that this is normal for the circumstance, not the “new normal” for the rest of our lives.”

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One thought on “Nursing students bring unique perspective to starting new school year

  1. Deonne Johnson says:

    Nice job, Laci! Thanks for contributing Jacob and Johncie, and for putting such a positive spin on a challenging situation. We have appreciated it, and even mentioned it to others that you have been real troopers!

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