by Dannil Mele
Times are troubling, and the quarantine shows no signs of lifting soon. Students and professors alike are struggling with the transition to online, and many have lost their jobs. With everything shifting, it is important to take stock of the resources available to us.
For professors, this means being aware of online resources for free textbooks and other teaching materials. Many companies have begun offering previously costly resources for free. Others have responded to direct requests by professors to make online textbooks available for their class. If you have a textbook that is essential to your course and cannot find an affordable online version, consider contacting the publisher.
Also, with the forewarning that summer classes will be online as well, professors who are teaching online classes should consider taking this opportunity to seek out reliable online resources. By doing this early, plenty of time remains to make necessary adjustments to the course.
For students, there are many resources available to help you keep on top of your work. At the University Writing Center, we are still available during our normal hours. Although we are only able to do online appointments, we are still working our hardest to ensure everyone gets the most out of our consultation. If online appointments aren’t for you, we also offer appointments by telephone, and we have online handouts available for a broad range of topics. These can be found on the Handouts tab of the University Writing Center website.
For many people, the hardest part of the quarantine has been losing their jobs and livelihoods. The US Department of Education is working with universities to release the first wave of Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) CARES Act funding, which is meant to assist students whose education has been affected by financial difficulties related to the COVID-19 outbreak. Although this is a step in the right direction, many will fail to qualify for this emergency funding. Therefore, other Appalachian State University programs seek to offer further support.
One valuable resource for students looking for new employment is the Career Development Center. The Career Development Center is offering virtual Career Studio hours Mondays through Thursdays from 2 to 4 PM. During these hours, you can meet virtually with a Career Guide, who can offer career assistance in a 1-on-1 session. Services they provide in these 1-on-1 sessions include resume and cover letter development and review, interview preparation, job searching skills and tips, and guidance on using online services such as Handshake and LinkedIn. Furthermore, the Career Development Center is hosting 2 Virtual Career Meetups every weekday through early May. These meetups cover a wide range of topics to assist job-seekers. You can check out the full list of events on their website.
In the past, the Career Development Center has hosted many events on campus to aid both students seeking jobs and employers seeking good workers. Although many of these events have been canceled or postponed, some have been able to transition to an online format. One such example is the Virtual Education Career Fair on Monday, April 20th, from 12:30 to 2:30 PM. Resources such as these are great tools to get back in the job market.
We wish you the best of luck transitioning during this difficult time. We are faced with many obstacles, so be sure to make good use of the resources available to you.