GSU freshman adjusting to new college lifestyle during a pandemic

ByDal Cannady|August 25, 2020 at 5:56 PM EDT - Updated August 25 at 5:56 PM

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - This fall semester at Georgia Southern University, with a pandemic, includes plenty of adjustments for faculty, staff, and students.

Only a handful of students sat in this lecture hall and signs on the seats kept them at a distance.

“One day per week, I’m in class. The rest of the week, I’m on virtual. I’ve really liked that part,” Georgia Southern freshman Fionna McBride said.

Rotations like this and others are part of university life this semester. University Provost Dr. Carl Reiber says they've created web pages and help lines for students who think they might have been exposed to the virus. He says they're using those to mitigate further spread.

“When they submit a ticket, we immediately know what classes they’re in because we’ve linked data bases. The CARES team then contacts the faculty member and says that a student won’t be in their class for a period of time,” Dr. Reiber said.

He says attending virtually helps students keep up without coming back to class before they should.

“If there’s a hotspot, we can identify it. If there’s a class, a room or a building or a dorm, we can handle it,” Dr. Reiber said.

In some spots, meals are "to-go" only and the robot delivery system helps minimize people's exposure.

“You can still talk to your roommates. You can still go places, even while keeping everybody safe,” Georgia Southern freshman Faye Turner said.

A few students said this isn’t exactly the college life they imagined, but it’s not as bad as they worried it would be.

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Photo: WTOC

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