Saint Martin’s Year of Transformation
Alina Cunningham, Staff Writer
It has been no secret that 2020 has become the Uno wild card of recent years. For new and returning students, it would not be a stretch of the imagination to imagine that this school year was supposed to be different. Both in format and instruction, this year came with its complications and setbacks, which must be worked around.
With this year being the theme of transformation Saint Martin’s University has done its best to accommodate and reassure its students of its changes to ensure health and safety, as well as to work against systemic racism on campus.
A recognizable change has been new accommodations and regulations in classrooms and on campus. Wearing a mask has become a new normal for on-campus students. The cafeteria has started using more to-go boxes instead of sitting in the dining hall, so that they can increase social distancing. More classes have been moved to a smaller class size and there have been a greater number of online classes being provided. These changes ensure that every student has the chance to engage actively in their education and find the classes that work best for them.
The traditional campus and educational formats have had to be transformed in order to be safe and accommodating to all students. Thankfully, the staff and professors that work here at Saint Martin’s University are more than up to the task. Over the summer, teachers engaged in online class-based education so that they could be prepared to move their classes fully online if need be and still give students a format to succeed in their educational goals.
Transformation, like many other parts of life, can be very difficult and hard to adjust to. However the result is increasingly more rewarding. Saint Martin’s University is taking steps to ensure that the school year can continue amidst the changing world that 2020 has brought.
While life on campus has certainly changed as a result of COVID-19 regulations, Saint Martin’s administration chose transformation as this year’s campus theme in light of a very different topic. As President Roy Heynderickx shared with the Saint Martin’s community on Aug. 5th, the goal of this year’s transformation is to “examine campus-wide systemic racism,” and, “transform the way we listen to, educate ourselves about and respond to systemic racism within our community and the greater community in Thurston County.”
2020 has brought new challenges and offered new resolutions to consistent societal problems. The transformation that Saint Martin’s University has gone through and continues to go through has given students the opportunity to continue engaging with their education. The theme has also provided hope to students that Saint Martin’s administration can address topics of racism on campus, and that their concerns can be listened to and acted upon.