As the coronavirus pandemic swept across the United States, many universities closed their campuses to students. These actions were an appropriate response to the necessity of social distancing and limiting large gatherings. The result of these actions was that students found themselves in the lurch for the remainder of the spring semester. Most schools transitioned their student bodies to online instruction, hoping to offer a facsimile of the on-campus experience. However, many students have found these offerings lacking when compared to the on-campus experience.
Students, many of whom paid tens of thousands of dollars in tuition and other associated fees, found themselves hoping for a reasonable refund since the schools were no longer providing the services they paid for. Unfortunately, many universities have provided inadequate relief, arguing that the (often hastily assembled) online learning experience has been comparable. Many students find this difficult to accept, particularly those whose fields of study rely heavily on in-person instructions in labs and studios. The same education is simply not possible when done online.