Journalism seniors become the first batch of students from the Faculty of Arts and Letters to return to the campus for face-to-face classes since the Covid-19 pandemic on Thursday, Sept. 22. (Photo by Matthew Vincent V. Vital/ The Varsitarian)

JOURNALISM seniors became the first batch of students from the Faculty of Arts and Letters to return to campus since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic as they started limited face-to-face (LF2F) classes on Thursday.

The three sections of fourth-year journalism students were each divided into two cohorts that consist of about 20 students per cohort. 

Classes are divided into simultaneous synchronous and asynchronous sessions to ensure distancing is maintained.

The senior journalism students will attend LF2F classes this semester for their broadcast journalism and thesis colloquium courses at the Buenaventura Garcia Paredes, O.P. (BGPOP) Building.

Formerly housed at the St. Raymund Peñafort Building, the journalism program will occupy the 11th floor of the BGPOP building, along with the communication program.

UST journalism program head Felipe Salvosa II earlier said LF2F classes would be expanded to include third-year students’ photojournalism course and fourth-year students’ thesis defense course next semester.

The Faculty of Arts and Letters’ behavioral science, communication, creative writing, economics, English language studies, history, literature and sociology programs are also set to begin their LF2F classes this semester after securing approval from the University Crisis Management Committee.

Health protocols

Students had to secure parental consent before joining the F2F classes.

Following the University’s updated health guidelines for limited F2F classes, the students were no longer required to be fully vaccinated nor avail themselves of medical insurance. 

However, they were still required to present copies of their daily health declaration checklist from the Thomasian Online Medical Services and Support (ThOMedSS) website.

Students can only enter the BGPOP Building during their scheduled LF2F classes. Only four students are allowed inside the elevators simultaneously, and all of them must face the walls.

Students are encouraged to bring packed food but will still be allowed to enter and exit the building to eat and buy food.

Other University health protocols must also be observed, such as the wearing of well-fitted masks, frequent handwashing and sanitizing, and social distancing.

‘High time for in-person classes’

Journalism senior Julianne Sarrosa said LF2F classes were necessary.

“I think it’s high time na magkaroon na ng in-person classes for broadcast journalism and thesis since these courses involve more than our research skills; may practical side rin,” she told the Varsitarian.

Sofia Valderama and and Angeline Tanqueco, two other journalism seniors, said they were excited about returning to the campus but were worried about crimes around the University belt and the increasing prices of goods.

“Returning to the ‘dorm life,’ mas mahirap and challenging na dahil sa taas ng bilihin and also, there will always be that worry sa mga usual crimes around the area,” Tanqueco said. 


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