The Corriere del Ticino, a Swiss news service in the Italian-speaking canton of Ticino, published a video feature today about Franklin University Switzerland students beginning classes for the spring semester. Sara Steinert Borella, Vice President of Academic Affairs, and four students from the United States were interviewed about the ways in which the University and the students are handling the questions of quarantine, restrictions, classes and being far from home during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Steinert Borella outlined the tools and methods used for distribution of course materials and online class meetings. The Moodle learning platform was improved with some new upgrades to facilitate online class meetings, and students are encouraged to use webcams to support participation in discussion and interaction among class members. She also reflected on some of the challenges posed by the pandemic and online learning. Finally, she commented that students find the restrictions to be reassuring, as having detailed rules to follow makes participating in preventing the spread of the virus straightforward and easy to understand.

The students interviewed expressed positivity about the way Switzerland is handling the pandemic. Many students chose to stay in Switzerland during the holidays to avoid the risks that travel and the decentralized management of the pandemic in the U.S. may have created for them and their families. While they miss many things about their homes, they appreciate the opportunities and cultural benefits they have experienced in Switzerland, and they view the lockdown as an opportunity for growth and personal reflection. They also view the rules and restrictions mandated by the Swiss government as necessary measures to be followed for the benefit of all.

See the full video on the Corriere del Ticino site.