Freshman Year Unknowns Weighing Heavy on High School Seniors

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Spring is typically the time for high school seniors to decide where they're going to attend college. However, the coronavirus pandemic has created a lot of uncertainties because many universities don't know if in-person classes can resume in the fall.

What to do about college is a stressful topic for these three students and just about every other high school senior.

“Everything is up in the air, uncertain,” said Haley Parsons, Canyon Crest Academy senior.

Parsons was all set to go to the University of Utah as a ballet and psychology double major. However, without the guarantee she'll have a normal freshman experience, she had to make a difficult decision if classes stay on-line.

“I’m definitely planning on deferring which is really disappointing since I’ve been looking forward to going to college definitely all throughout high school," Parsons said.

Itzell Mendoza was featured on NBC 7 when she organized a fundraiser for a family whose home burned down. The Charter School of San Diego student is going to attend Cal State San Marcos.

"I'm not sure if classes will still be continuing by the time I have to attend university during the fall or if I will have to be doing classes online from home. So, it's a bit stressful," said Mendoza.

She's attending the university no matter what, even with the high cost of tuition, but she's worried about what life will be like.

“What kind of scares me the most is going back to or starting this new year at my university, and that fear that this virus might still be there,” she said.

Alexis Hernandez is deciding between SDSU and Cal State Fullerton. What happens with coronavirus over the next couple of days will impact her decision.

“I’ve been hearing about the first day of college ever since I started high school. I’ve been hearing that you basically start your new life and you get to finally make choices that are going to benefit you," the Eastlake High School senior said.

While Hernandez may not get to move into the dorms, she and the other students are staying positive.

“I think we’re definitely facing the situation with grace and just trying to be positive about it as possible," she said.

NBC 7 did reach out to local universities about plans for the fall semester and quarter. UC San Diego released the following statement: "We have not made any decisions about the fall quarter yet. We are looking at multiple models and have activated a continuity of education task force, a continuity of research task force and are also working with public health experts to help inform decisions in concert with the UC System. The health and safety of our community is our first priority."

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