BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — Thousands of students went back to class today at Cal State Bakersfield. While many students and administrators were excited to get back to in-person learning, the college will continue to look a little different this year.
“I’m actually pretty excited, yes. Um, I’m looking forward to meeting new people. Meeting my teachers getting that more like school experience not compared to last years,” said Jimena Sifuentes.
Many students on campus were smiling through their masks as they returned to campus but, some like freshman, Yunuen Paramo, expressed they were a little nervous to return amid a pandemic.
“Mmm a little bit because being able to communicate with people that’s like the most important thing,” said Paramo.
The administrators did everything they could to make students feel welcome while on campus like, dining services, who created a fun spin the wheel game where the students could win things like hand sanitizer and water bottles.
CSUB President Lynnette Zelezny could not hide her excitement about being back on campus.
“I got a big smile and, I think they’re really happy to be engaged. And I'm really happy to offer students that opportunity to have the face-to-face, hybrid, and of course flexibility with virtual classes,” said Zelezny.
WATCH THE FULL INTERVIEW WITH CSUB PRESIDENT LYNETTE ZELEZNY:
For a computer science major, Sifuentes, she said she recognizes the importance of being in person.
“Online, it was definitely not the same every one had their cameras off, or even if they were on, it was kind of just like awkward silence between people. So, I think it’s definitely nice to see people again and hopefully make new relationships,” said Zelezny.
Although Paramo was nervous to come on campus at first, she is happy with the safety protocols and left her classmates with a message.
“Don’t be afraid. Maybe you could get lost but you’re gonna get used to it and you’re gonna be making new friends and you’re gonna get comfortable,” said Zelezny.
CSUB currently requires students and staff to be fully vaccinated by September 30 and wear their masks while on campus.