I can see where some students are coming from. It is unfortunate that unlike other universities and even high schools, our spring break was but a measly Monday. If you’re a student reading this, you might be feeling ripped off, and I can empathize with you. It sucks. But people must realize that this is a necessary precaution if Nodaway County is to prosper in a post-COVID world.
Remember when the cases in Nodaway County skyrocketed shortly after classes began? Well, that was inevitable with several thousand new people from all over the Midwest and country moving in, but it got to the point where going completely online was not off the table. Luckily, we prevailed and cases dropped back down. The number of infected people in the county now is lower than July, before classes began.And recently, thousands of people have been vaccinated within the county. It is right here in this moment in time where Nodaway County is going downhill for the first time in a long time, and we do not need a few thousand students going God knows where to risk that.
If we were given a longer spring break, say a week, I’m pretty sure this is what would happen. For one, the freshman would go home. But the upperclassmen who live here? They’re gonna go places. Maybe to their old home, but some would travel. Maybe to Kansas City, maybe to the Ozarks, maybe to Branson or maybe even out of state, which isn’t hard to do when you’re only a half hour away from Iowa, an hour away from Nebraska and about 45 minutes from Kansas.
A lot of students will travel and likely ignore guidelines by not wearing a mask or going to crowded areas, either because they don’t believe in the virus or they just don’t want to follow the rules. I see no point in risking the flattening of the curve that we were hoping for all last summer. Some have criticized the University's decision and last-minute cancellation, but the University insists that they had to make a decision once they had all the info they needed.
As a student I cannot help but still feel upset with such a small break from school. A well-deserved week off of school would’ve been just what the doctor ordered. Regardless, I stand firm with the University on this decision. We haven’t had many COVID-19 infections or deaths; why risk it now? At least this way we will get a dead week for finals starting April 23. Now that I think of it, we did have an extra-long spring break last year.