Over a month ago, many of us had a simple trajectory: We were going to finish the school term and get jobs. There may have been other horizons to explore—a trip to Europe, summer credits. But most of us were set on our expectations. Then all of a sudden, calamity hit us and classes shifted to an online model. We felt resentment because our plans were disrupted.

This was not the plan! We were used to in-class instruction in order to finish our respective school programs. The abrupt way this happened with just a month left caught us completely off-guard.

Disappointment is a natural reaction. We’re living in the midst of a national emergency—and our main duties involve staying in and doing homework. Worse still, the natural support networks we formed in the classroom are greatly diminished. How awful is that?

But maybe as The Talking Heads noted, things are the same as they ever were. Truthfully, while our living circumstances and method of course delivery has changed, the fundamental plan that leads to our end goal has not: We still have to finish our courses in order to graduate and move on with our lives. That’s why we are doing post-secondary education.

Then there’s the silver lining: I’m not spending any money on gas or parking. Without a commute to campus, I don’t have to wake up as early to get to class. Professors and course instructors have been very accommodating with answering questions. We are being listened to and efforts are being made to address ongoing issues.

We may need to utilize more self-discipline to hunker down and complete all of the quizzes, tests and assignments that now comprise our daily routine. Even during the best of times, certain subjects may have been challenging. There are no social outings, which is stressful in itself, but there are new ways to manage our time and hopefully stay on track.

What everyone is counting on most of all is hope for the future. The day when we can put all these events behind us like they were no more than a bad dream. Completion of our educational goals fits right into that plan because it frees us to enjoy the careers we always envisioned ourselves having. In turn, that will lead to us leading the lifestyle we wanted. It might not happen exactly as we’d planned, but eventually, it will happen. So we owe it to ourselves to keep our noses to the grindstone and complete our classes.

One day, we’ll look back, and we’ll be proud of ourselves.

By: Brian D’Souza