FORT PIERCE, Fla. — To help guide Indian River State College through the COVID-19 pandemic, the college has chosen its fourth president.
Dr. Timothy Moore said his No. 1 goal is to be able to help IRSC's diverse student body succeed, whether in person or online.
"Some people learn better in person," Moore said. "Some people can seamlessly interact between classroom and online. Others can't. So, we have to be mindful of that."
The college's previous president, Dr. Edwin Massey, retired at the end of August.
Bryan Leao is a new student at IRSC and said his semester is far from what he envisioned.
"It's nothing what I thought it would be," Leao said. "It's, like, so different with the virus and stuff."
Only 35% of the students at IRSC have chosen to enroll in traditional classes, Moore said.
"Everybody is 6 feet apart," Moore said. "We have to do that so you're talking across rooms and not around tables."
The other 65% are enrolled in virtual classes.
Leao said some of his classmates are struggling.
"Some students need in-person communication to really better understand the topic," he said.
Moore said the college does have the ability to go completely online should schools get shut down again.
In the meantime, more classes that are spaced out have been added and with a limited capacity in order to adhere to guidelines set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
"We cannot, as a society, stay locked down forever," Moore said. "It's not healthy. Economically, it's not sustainable. Educationally, it's going to do more harm than good."