Wiza Mkorongo, LifeNets scholarship student, writes this report in the third person. He is speaking about himself. We are pleased that he has a job and is surviving the pandemic and its constraints with so many others.
It was a good morning. The sun was shining radiantly, birds were chirping and dogs were barking when our lovely nation, Malawi, woke up to news of a pandemic that took the whole world by storm. It was reported that life will no longer be the same for at least a good number of months to come as words like social distancing, face masks, hand sanitizers and lock down were flying all over.
The fourth year students had to accept that their graduation will delay by six months to a whole year utmost and the graduates had to reschedule their graduation plans because the government said that any grouping must not hold more than one hundred people. We have a lot of frustrated graduates yearning to duly get their long awaited credentials but the pandemic has slowed this down.
Some beneficiaries of the LifeNets scholarships have been able to get jobs amid the pandemic and half way done with their degree programs. Some of the beneficiaries have gotten jobs as a Site Manager of a building contractor and a Branch Manager of a logistics and shipping company. These opportunities have helped them to help themselves and others as is the motto for LifeNets.
Some students have made approaches to keep up with their studies by taking online classes and approaching their instructors for study materials (pdf, audio and video files) in order to further their studies.
Even if some students have made efforts to further their studies, others have a challenge as some of them do not have personal computers which makes it slightly difficult to continue with their studies and resort to waiting for communication from their respective schools as to when in-person classes will resume.
As the world continues to turn, time will come when the curtains will close, the sun will set and the dust will settle on this pandemic so all we have is hope, hope that things will get back to normal. Should this continue, we will have to get used to the “new normal” and embrace taking online classes just as the sun will continue to shine, the birds will continue to chirp and the dogs will continue bark with or without the pandemic.