By Laura Huskey - Reporter
As precautions are taken across the country to prevent the spread of COVID-19, college and university students are affected most significantly in their education. Students continue to be affected by changing classes and deadlines.
The clubs and organizations at Rose State are not exempt from these adjustments either. The Baptist Collegiate Ministry at Rose State is moving to meet online in an effort to stay connected.
“We don’t want to go completely silent,” BCM adviser Terry Thomas said.
He hopes that replacing their usual meetings with a temporary online connection will continue to be beneficial and encouraging to the students in BCM.
“Any organization that is made up of people is going to be social in nature,” Thomas said. “Even if we don’t interact the way we’d like to, being together builds personal accountability.”
Thomas hopes that continuing to stay in touch will drive the BCM to be together more meaningfully. Thomas thinks it’s important to realize that even in this period of time, people can make the most of it.
While classes and everything else move online in response to COVID-19, students have to be significantly more disciplined in their coursework and in their connection with their friends.
The group plans to meet for 30 minutes once a week over Zoom. The challenge is seeing how well students can adapt to this new normal.
“I don’t want people to think this interaction is mistaken for real community,” Thomas said.
Music major Nicola Lunow agrees.
“It will lessen the face-to-face time, so I think that will lead to less openness just because we won’t get to know each other as well as we would if we had spent the rest of the semester meeting,” Lunow said.
Thomas knows this short amount of time will not be enough to fill the holes, but plans to utilize the group’s social media to reach out to students both in the BCM and out of it. He said there is a difference between face-to-face communication and online communication. Both can be valuable, but it is hard to replace the usual.
Thomas said this can be a great time for other Christian communities on campus to draw together and encourage each other and those outside the community.
“I hope that people will see our love for Christ and each other through these meetings,” Lunow said.
With international students being stuck on campus, Thomas and the BCM want to reach out to them to see if there are needs that need to be met. The BCM will be checking in to see where they are able to provide some assistance.
Whenever all is settled, the group plans to throw a bash to rekindle the loss of face-to-face community and have a reason to celebrate.