There is no debate that the Coronavirus pandemic has negatively affected all students attending school, but it is clear that this year’s graduating class received the shortest end of the stick. The 2020-2021 academic year is not what the Ursinus Class of 2021 expected or deserves. The seniors may be on campus, but are living without the events that make a memorable senior year. The Class of 2021 has never and will never see a Bear Bash. No traditional school-organized events for the seniors this year, either. And who knows what graduation will look like?
Left will be only the memories of the past three years — Reimert days and nights, classroom banter, formals, sporting events, Homecoming and everything in between. The Class of 2021 fortunately got to see The Commons. While the Café is dedicated to the Class of 2020, some recognition of the Class of 2021 should be considered. From the perspective of the senior class, it is hard to understand that in-person classes can resume, but an outdoor socially distanced, masked event is unachievable.
As a current sophomore, I cannot and will not understand the disappointment seniors are experiencing. But I sympathize greatly with them. Listening and talking to various members of the senior class, athletes and otherwise, from every major, there is a general consensus that Ursinus could have done more to support their class. I am certain that the senior class is grateful to the administration for making on-campus living this year possible; however, they would have liked to see more in the way of fun and uplifting events. Seniors suggested, for example, outdoor, socially distanced gatherings to decompress from the stress of classes. The seniors are attempting to be understanding of the circumstances the administration faces, and while they are incredibly thankful to be in person, the campus is just not the same socially.
Senior student-athletes, not just at Ursinus but in the entire Centennial Conference, have missed out on their senior seasons. For the spring student-athletes especially, if the 2021 season is cancelled, they will have missed out on 50 percent of their collegiate athletic experience. Hopefully that decision turns around in the next couple of weeks, even if it is an irregular season. The senior class would appreciate any kind of season they can get their hands on, to play with their teammates.
There is still some form of graduation and related events to look forward to, but another concern among seniors is that morale surrounding such events is too low. The administration should work more to give seniors something to look forward to. This article is not intended to degrade the intentions of the administration, but the senior class would greatly appreciate more recognition, especially for all they have given to this school for the past four years.
To the senior class; your teammates, friends, classmates, the entire student body stands behind you and is hoping for administration to turn around these last two and a half months to make up for the loss since March 2020.