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MSU students want the option to choose online or in-person learning

Posted at 8:24 PM, Jan 24, 2022

EAST LANSING, Mich. — After three weeks of online classes, Michigan State University will return to in-person learning Jan. 31, but not everyone is ready to step back on campus.

A newpetition is making its way around MSU's campus, asking the university to give students the option to take their classes online.

"We are paying for our own tuition and education, and we should be able to be in any kind of environment that suits us. Because when we're in an environment that makes us comfortable, we'll probably thrive more and do better," said Katarina Keely, a senior at MSU who started the petition.

Keeley wants students to have the option to take classes online if they need to, if they're sick or just don't feel comfortable.

Keeley said in the petition that she initially wrote an email to MSU President Samuel Stanley, but decided to create the petition after realizing other students shared her concerns.

"I chose remote because I like being able to just wake up and log into class. I also like being able to be safe and not like spread my germs, anybody else's germs and not have to worry about falling behind," said Drue Bender, a sophomore.

Bender is studying social relations and policy, and when she saw the petition, she knew she had to sign it.

"I do think it's a good idea because for students when they do get sick, or if they do test positive, or if they do need to quarantine its nothing really in place for those students or what they should do with no alternative. So unfortunately, we just end up falling behind," she said from her personal experience at MSU's James Madison College.

Bender believes having an option for remote learning gives students the best of both worlds.

Nikunj Agarwal, a senior at MSU who started a petition to bring back the pass fail grading option, also agrees that students should have the flexibility.

"It's really important that professors understand that it's not just the students who are suffering, it's not just the faculty who are suffering, but it's everybody in the community," he said.

MSU Spokesperson Dan Olsen said a statement that "students should reach out directly to their faculty member to seek out supportive resources and accommodations during illness."

He also emphasized that if students have challenges with accommodations, reach out to the university ombudsperson to help navigate the situation.

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