Institutes' Role In Combating And Coping With COVID-19

The Internet and progression in technology have come to the rescue and have brought a huge pedagogical change in the education sector.

The Pandemic

The pandemic due to COVID-19 has already spread to almost every country, including India. In terms of numbers, there have been more than 4 Million confirmed cases of COVID-19 that have surfaced across the world. India alone accounts for around 60,000 confirmed cases. The effect of this pandemic can be seen on a catastrophic scale. The economic setback has been huge as the whole world has been taken by a storm by a virus that had no existence till 4-5 months ago. 

The World Coming Together 

COVID-19 has led to all major international blocks coming together and fighting the pandemic. With a positive mindset and a never-ending fighting spirit, efforts to combat and cope with the effects of the pandemic have begun. Every recent division of the society; public sector, private sector, colleges, universities etc has been in accordance with reducing the impact of the pandemic in the overall functioning of their respective objectives. 

While some industries are surviving through extensive use of the internet and implementing work from home, the situation today has had an adverse effect on the education of students globally. The pandemic has not only affected their education but also the economic aspects linked to education like student loans, debts, housing, etc.  

Taking a cue from Stefania Giannini, UNESCO’s Assistant Director, who laid emphasis upon coming together to address this educational crisis while also building a stronger foundation for a resilient long-term education system world-wide; many educational bodies have come up with various out-of-the-box ways to help and support the overall situation of students, be it regarding their education, skill enhancement or student debts. 

Biggest Stakeholders for Future 

The youth is the biggest stakeholder of the future and 99% of them are dependent on the institutes from where they conceive their education which makes the role of colleges and educational bodies the most important and vital in keeping the education structure alive. Although this global pandemic has created social and physical limitations, the education industry has taken a big leap within a matter of weeks to cross the barrier and facilitate learning. 

The Internet and progression in technology have come to the rescue and have brought a huge pedagogical change in the education sector. Curricular, as well as extracurricular activities, are being transformed according to the current scenario with the focus being on minimizing the interruptions in the education cycle. Apart from the educational aspect, the financial aspects of the students are also being considered and various institutes have come up with initiatives of their own to help students out. This break from regular classroom learning has also led to the encouragement of multifaceted skill development. 

In these difficult and distracting times for students, the biggest responsibility lies with the educational institutes to bring about radical changes and motivate the students in the right manner and at the right time. Only then will these initiatives and action plans be beneficial for the students. Moreover, this out-of-the-box thinking and adaptive attitude will help institutes in setting the right brand value for themselves. Here are some initiatives taken up by institutes all over the world to cope with this situation:  

Initiatives taken by Educational Institutes

Migration to Digital Ways: shifting to digital methods and educating students virtually with the help of online lectures, recorded classes, webinars, live discussions and much more. 

Scholarship Initiatives: as a humanitarian effort, providing scholarships to Grad and Post Grad students on admission to help them with the financial stress that they go through. 

Time Relaxations: extending deadlines to provide ample time for students to take a view of the situation and decide on a course of action. 

Waiving Application Fees: Some institutes have also decided on waiving off their application fee. 

The educational bodies have the ability to make or break the future of the world by deciding how they help the youth gain proper education without any hiccups while the world tries to rise above this terrible pandemic. Let us see to it that we all do our bit and come out of this stronger. 

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house

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