Photo Credit: Dogherine (via Unsplash)
Electronics such as mobile phones and computers have gradually become more and more necessary for university students to complete their degrees. During 2020 and part of 2021, we completed our courses entirely online and at the mercy of our internet connection. While technology has the potential to make our lives easier, many university students have experienced the apprehension and anguish at the prospect that their 2013 MacBook Pro may give up and die halfway through the semester.
Our tuition doesn’t include the cost of textbooks. Despite this, they are commonly considered essential to succeeding in a course. How much more valuable, then, is possessing a computer on which to complete tests, type up assignments, perform research and keep up on class cancellations and schedule changes?
We own computers because we are expected to; because society has become so dependent on technology’s convenience that to do without a computer at home would put you at a steep disadvantage compared to other students. However, technology is always being upgraded and outmoded with new models coming out and older computers starting to overheat and shut down in the middle of an important paper.
We all pray that our technology will last until graduation, but some of us are less fortunate. Some of us must concede to consumerism and scrape together enough money for new technology simply because we have no choice. At peak desperation and resourcefulness, it is possible to complete your university work using only public computers and a thumb drive, this method, however, is time-consuming and inconvenient. So, what else can you do when your PC kicks the bucket? Borrow a parents’ computer? Type everything up on the Microsoft Word app on your phone? I shudder to think of the alternatives.
Meanwhile, elementary, middle, and high school students in Newfoundland have received Google Chromebooks which they, for all intents and purposes, own until graduation. Where is the justice for university students? Nobody expects the university to take ownership of this issue and provide students with the technology required for their courses, however, the battle to keep our technology alive long enough for us to graduate is a valid struggle. It is important for universities to be aware of what hindrances students run into that may obstruct their education. So, here it is, for all to consider: We are starving for worry-free access to technology!