Technology helps college classes go on, despite flu

Anne Brock # State

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - Charlie Singleton and his wife both tested positive for the flu, and he immediately contacted his instructors to let them know he'd be out of class for a few days. However, this engineering student still stayed current with what was happening during the week he couldn't attend Pellissippi State Community College.

He was able to do all of the work except for his labs. Singleton said,

"A lot of my reading, a lot of bookwork, a lot my studying, but none of my labs. So I've got 19 labs I've got to catch up."
Now, his instructors are giving him an extra week to catch up.

Another Pellissippi State student said she felt she had to attend her labs, despite being ill. However, a college spokesperson said PSCC is encouraging instructors to be lenient with students at this time, to allow for flu-related absences.

Pellissippi State's Director of Marketing and Communications Julia Wood said that although the school has closed sometimes for winter weather, it will not close for illness. Wood said,

"We have seen some faculty and staff and students who have been out with the flu, not surprisingly. But we have alternate ways of working around that. We encourage faculty to work with the students who have to be out because of illness."

While a large portion of 11,000 PSCC students attend traditional classes at one of its five campuses, a large portion also attend classes entirely online. This, and the online nature of assignments and projects for students, allows maximum flexibility. The college has no plans to cancel classes, even if the flu season continues.

As for getting the flu, "stay home if you'e got it. Don't share it. It's not fun,"
said Singleton.