Allison Schulte is a spring 2020 Wichita State University graduate who majored in strategic communication in the Elliott School of Communication.
Allison is from Wichita and attended Kapaun Mount Carmel Catholic High School. Students in public information writing evaluated Wichita State’s remote learning response to COVID-19, and this blog is a product of that project.
As a graduate, I have faced my own personal fears and anxieties about what my future holds. I think I can speak for all the seniors by saying that this is not how we envisioned our final year ending.
During these uncertain times, Wichita State University and President Jay Golden have been helpful by providing constant communication to their students.
What stood out most to me was the compassion of my professors. Their concern goes far beyond school work. They truly care about each and every student and want what is best for us. The communication between student and teacher is what helped my classmates and me cope with the sudden move to online learning.
Professor Eric Wilson, who taught public information writing, deserves an award for the way he handled the transition to online. Eric emailed us multiple times a week with words of encouragement, job or internship opportunities, and nerdy jokes to make our days brighter.
He always showed he cared by providing online office hours and taking the time to reach out to each student to make sure we were doing okay.
Late in the fall 2019 semester, I joined the Wichita State women’s tennis team. Unfortunately, my time with the team was cut very short.
This was one of the more difficult things for me to cope with. Coach Colin Foster and assistant coach Kewa Foster did everything in their power to make us feel safe. They held regular Zoom meetings, offered to grocery shop for us and sent workouts to keep us active. I’ve played tennis my whole life, and it has been hard to see my career end this way, but I’m leaving with new friends and great memories.
Although many of the graduates are still in pursuit of work, we know Wichita State will always be there for us. Although online classes will never compare to the time spent together in class, Wichita State has helped prepare me to take on the next challenge.
As I sit and reflect on my time at Wichita State, I am overcome with appreciation for my family and the amazing people I met throughout my time here. I have always struggled to find my path in life. I never could quite settle on a degree or see myself in a specific career. When I started at Wichita State, I chose a degree at random. As a graduate from the Elliott School of Communication, I can now say I am confident I have found my way.
Congratulations to my fellow seniors. We have all accomplished something great, and no virus can take that away from us.