North Central College in the News

North Central College first-generation students talked to National Public Radio

May 12, 2020

The COVID-19 global pandemic has upended life for all, especially college graduates

When the coronavirus pandemic hit, college students’ lives turned upside down. For many, they moved out of dorms and back in with their parents; virtual classes replaced lecture halls. For seniors, the tradition of graduation was cancelled; a day that has even more meaning for first-generation students, who are the first in their families to attend a four-year institution.

Two North Central College first-generation students spoke with National Public Radio on the unforeseen ending to their senior year of college.

For some students, their daily schedules had completely changed amid the adjustments made for the pandemic. There are more distractions or families require assistance with family members and students just made it work the best way they could.

“During the daytime when I wanted to do my work, I couldn’t because I had to watch my two nieces for my family,” said Anita Herrera ’20. “And then when my mom came home, she also needed help with the girls because there is two of them. So, there just wasn’t enough time to do my work during the day so I often would have to do it at night.”

Then, there becomes the question of what happens after college, because for many seniors their future plans have been turned upside down.

“I’m supposed to start my PhD program in Michigan in the fall,” said Darryl Watkins ’20. “When I look for apartments now, I don’t know yet if I’ll be at home or I’ll be out in Michigan. So, it kind of throws it up in the air, as I am sure it does for many other students traveling for their PhD or other undergraduate students.

Click her to listen to the full interview on NPR. **

** This segment starts around 19:50 into the full program. **

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