In the first week in March 2020, I remember sitting in my Managing Diversity class before the start when everyone around me was talking about, “What if they close campus and we don’t get to finish our senior year?” My response, “Psh! They’re not going to close the whole campus. We’ve had other bad flu seasons, snow, and ice storms. This is not going to shut it down.” Boy was I wrong!
In my three years living with roommates in college, I can positively say that we never turned on the news, before the first week in March. Two of my roommates had trips planned for spring break (which was the following week), and we were truly so confused with what was going on. We had never heard of a pandemic before. The thought of entire cities or states going into a lockdown was completely foreign to us. We thought it couldn’t be possible.
Almost a year later here we are; quarantine, remote, and Coronavirus are words we use and hear daily. I will be completing my master’s degree completely online, will start and finish an internship completely online. At the end of the day, I will still have the same degree and I will still have the same work experience, but there is a stark difference in this year compared to others. Some could argue that we have learned more this way, I have had to become entirely independent in understanding course material, ways of communicating, and transferring knowledge has become more diverse. Others will argue that we have missed an entire year of understanding business adequate, social cues and haven’t been able to gain knowledge from each other.
I believe a little bit of both is true. Being able to bounce thoughts and ideas off each other has certainly been disabled by online learning, but I think gaining the independence to figure out the solution to a problem on your own is a skill that is too often overlooked in this age of “teamwork.” However, none of this would have been possible if it weren’t for the technology we have today.
In the past weeks, we have done a lot of thanking to the frontline workers who are keeping us safe and to the scientist who have created this vaccine, I think that we also owe a huge thanks to the generations of people involved in creating the wealth of technology we have today. Without it, most of us wouldn’t have been able to continue working or going to school our lives truly would have been put on pause. Cloud technology made it possible for us to transition our work lives home. IoT devices have created an eco-system of technology making at-home learning and working much easier. And it is all protected by different architectures and defenders, like Defender for IoT, PPSK (Private Pre-Shared Key), and ExtremeCloud IQ architecture.
Overall, this year was like learning to write with your left hand after being a righty all your life. It wasn’t pretty at the beginning, and it still doesn’t look great, but we’ve figured it out, are back on track and now are more prepared for whatever life is going to throw at us next.