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The Top 7 Reasons Why Going Back to School Online is Not That Bad

If I’ve learned one thing this year, it’s that the only thing that’s certain is uncertainty. In the face of a global pandemic, we’ve been forced to reevaluate how we live our everyday lives. We’ve searched for ways to stay connected while being apart, ways to stay involved in the world around us from behind a screen, and ways to look cute even while wearing a mask! I think it’s safe to say that we have come a long way since six months ago when this all started (and I know what you’re thinking… six months? ALREADY?)  As we try to get back to our “normal” routine, one major change this year is that we’ll be taking our classes online. For many of us, change is scary and TBH, no matter how we’re doing it, we probably can’t say we’re fans of the whole attending-lectures-and-writing-30-page-essays shindig. But I’m here to tell you that there is a silver lining. When you go back to school online, you might just find yourself having more time to do the things that matter most. Here’s my list of reasons why going back to school online is not that bad. I hope this helps you get back to your routine with a little spring in your step.

More time for self-care

You can probably relate when I say I’ve used more face masks, watched more Netflix, and done more at-home workouts during quarantine than I’ve ever done in my life. When we no longer have to dedicate time toward commuting and walking from one class to the other, we can take some time to focus on ourselves. Whether that be physical, spiritual, emotional or mental, it’s self-care that is needed now more than ever.

You will save money (if online shopping doesn’t take over!)

Let’s be real… we’ve all been there. Passing by our favorite coffee shop on campus, trying to use every ounce of willpower in our body to stop us from walking over and buying a snack (likely an overpriced unhealthy one). No in-person class equals no need to channel that self-discipline while on campus and no need to bring out the big bucks for a PRESTO card to help us get there. 

It becomes a lot easier to say no!

“Can I copy your work but just switch up the words a little?” “Have any extra change?” “Wanna collaborate on this assignment?” (Note: this request is usually followed by “Sorry! I was so busy. Thanks for doing all of the work though!”). No in-person learning is a dream come true for all of the people-pleasers out there who can’t seem to shake that self-sabotaging tendency of always saying “yes,” “I guess so…,” or “Umm… okay!” It’s a lot easier to say “NO” from behind a screen and in the end, you’ll have more time, energy and money to do the things that you actually want to do.

Helps you work on self-discipline and time-management

One of the complaints I’ve heard the most surrounding online classes is that we’ll have to take the initiative to manage our own study time. No professor or teaching assistant is going to yell at us for playing the Google snake game, bringing out iMessage, or taking a nap during class. It’s up to us to make sure we get our work done on time. But hey, by the end of the year, you’ll develop the essential life skills of self-discipline and time-management.

Levels the playing field for introverts and extroverts!

One thing’s for sure: everyone feels awkward about everything all the time on Zoom. Someone doesn’t realize that their camera is still on while they’re plucking their brows? Awkward. The prof doesn’t realize that a family member has entered the room partially dressed? Awkward. Since we’ve all had these awkward moments and are likely going to feel the same level of discomfort on Zoom, nobody is really judging anyone. So even if you aren’t usually a “hand-raiser,” give it a shot! It’s a great way to get comfortable speaking in front of a larger number of people from the safety of a computer screen.

More time to figure out what you want to do with your life

The struggles of being a university student are real. You hustle to get your work done throughout the year to a point where you are burned out by summer and have no energy to focus on the future. When you’re well-rested, BAM! It’s September and the cycle repeats. By the time you reach the end of your degree, you’re scrambling to figure out what’s next. The little extra time you’ll have this year will hopefully enable you to explore your interests and discover your passions so that you are better prepared for the next chapter of your life. And the best part is that you can do it all in your PJs!

More time to educate yourself on the world around you

COVID-19 is not the only pandemic we’re facing. In light of continued racist police violence towards Black communities in Canada and the US, many of us have been taking the time to educate ourselves on systemic racism and how our everyday actions can either contribute to racist ideologies or challenge them. I encourage you to continue to take the time to educate yourself and others so that we can help keep up the momentum surrounding the Black Lives Matter movement. Going back to school online allows us to dedicate more time and effort toward actions that create positive change.

Even though there are many benefits to going back to school online this year, sometimes it’s hard to see the bright side. We’re only human and even if we took it for granted before, we have now come to realize how much we value in-person social interaction. Though you may feel closed off from the rest of the world, the way you experience this school year is completely dependent on your mindset. Be positive, don’t forget about the people who are right in front of you, motivate yourself to try new things, and put yourself “out there!”
Riya is an Indian-Canadian writer from Richmond Hill, Ontario. She is in her first year in the teaching program at York University! Riya has been writing her entire life; she joined Her Campus to connect with others who have the same passion and share her ideas on topics including politics, lifestyle, and well-being. Her favourite thing about writing is that it can be approached and interpreted differently by each individual based on their own personal experiences. When she is not writing, she can be found watching movies, painting, volunteering in her community, or listening to music - she has song lyrics running through her head 24/7! Riya lives by the quote; “To the world, you may be one person, but to one person you may be the world.”
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