CUC community reacts to the return of in-person classes in Fall 2021


Vicky Carrasquillo

Concordia University Chicago announced on February 26 that it will return to face-to-face instruction for the Fall 2021 Semester. Excitement and speculation have begun as everyone prepares to leave virtual learning behind us.

Students will once more attend classes in-person, and sports and extracurricular activities will resume. At the same time, some COVID-19 restrictions about social distancing and other health precautions will likely remain in place. Students with underlying medical conditions will still be able to attend class online. On-campus residents will also be granted the opportunity to choose their preferred roommates and their dorm building. You can check out Spectator reporter Brielle Conwell’s article here for a more detailed plan about the Fall 2021 return to campus. 

“I am hoping to get the vaccine soon and expecting to be back on campus full-time in the fall. I’m grateful for the opportunity to teach hyflex this Spring, but I’m looking forward to having our students back on campus in the fall,” said Mary Wink, academic support coordinator.  “It will be wonderful to have more face-to-face interactions.” 

“There’s a certain energy of having everyone together in person that is hard to replicate online,” said Thomas Salek, assistant professor of communication. “One part of e-learning that I loved, and am trying to find a viable alternative, is having a chat function for students to answer or ask questions. This was a great way to have multiple forms of participation.” 

E-learning has been a huge part of students’ lives since March 2020. It has proven to be a different and unique way of learning that everyone has had to adjust to.

“I will technically be a second-semester junior, but I am extremely excited to go back on campus,” said Franchesca Heidenreich. “I’m not excited to have to wear a mask at school all day but I can’t wait to go back because I miss progressing in school as well as I miss my classes and doing my art for school, even though I don’t miss the stress.” 

Heidenreich is an art therapy major, and coming back to campus not only gives her the ability to be more hands-on, but offers all other art students the opportunity to learn more efficiently. Students in other departments that have not had the hyflex option will also benefit greatly from the return to in-person learning. 

“I am eager to return to face-to-face instruction,” said Damian Peoples, professor of cultural anthropology. “As a cultural anthropologist, I am accustomed to in-person interviews and participating in hands-on group activities. I am not sure what I will miss about e-learning, but I will definitely continue to incorporate some of the technological knowledge that I have learned over the past year.” 

Many students and faculty are ready to get back to normal campus life this upcoming fall, as it will be a step toward returning to what we are used to and remember. With COVID-19 precautions taking place to ensure safety for the community, it will be an exciting return for students coming back in the Fall of 2021.