Students changing or deferring college plans due to COVID-19 impacts

The uncertainty of on-campus versus online learning has some students and families reconsidering plans for college.

Colleges and universities across the country are modifying plans for the upcoming school year due to COVID-19, and some students are doing the same thing.

“I didn’t want COVID to affect my college experience at all,” said Isabella Foxley.

Foxley is an upcoming college freshman. She says she planned on living on campus, until she learned the majority of her classes would be online. Now, she is now planning on commuting to school.

“I don’t need to pay all this money, so I don’t need to take out loans which means I can pay less,” she said.

This is a trend that many college students are following.

“Just really calling into question what is the value of an education in this environment, and a lot of our students are saying, 'I’m going to pause for right now,'” said DJ Crisostomo.

Crisostomo is the national director for Ready to Rise, an organization working to support diverse members of communities’ efforts toward college degrees.

Crisostomo says a lot of students are choosing to defer or alter their plans for college due to COVID-19.

He says right now there are just so many unknowns for these students

“A lot of colleges were saying, ‘yeah we’re going to do a hybrid of, you know, we’re going to be back in person,’ and things are getting drawn back specifically in our state. But nobody really knows what that is going to fully look like, which is why all the more reason people are wanting to defer because they’re just not sure,” said Crisostomo.

He says for any students concerned about affording college, reach out to your school’s financial aid office. He says there are still funds available in a lot of cases.