With jobs and internships in jeopardy, some UMD students are changing their summer plans

McKeldin Library on May 4, 2020. (Julia Nikhinson/The Diamondback)

By Jake Bowen
For The Diamondback

As the spring semester comes to a close at the University of Maryland, the usual summertime anticipation has been replaced by uncertainty for many students.

With most states, including Maryland, still under stay-at-home orders due to the coronavirus pandemic, many students have lost job and internship opportunities for the upcoming months.

But for some, the situation poses an opportunity to get ahead.

Samuel Simons, a junior finance major, said he plans to take classes through three different universities this summer — aiming to earn 20 to 27 credits by the end of break.

“I was planning on getting a part-time job and taking summer classes,” Simons said. “But at this point, it’s just summer classes.”

[Read more: UMD to hold the first round of summer classes online]

If the pandemic weren’t a factor in the upcoming break, Simons said he wouldn’t be taking the same number of classes he’s currently planning to take. But due to this time of uncertainty, he said he doesn’t want to pass up the opportunity to “get as many classes out of the way” as he can.

“Everybody’s offering pass/fail classes,” Simons said. “It’s the perfect time to kind of take advantage of the fact that nobody really knows what’s going on.”

Sahil Kapoor, a sophomore applied mathematics major, said he had plans to intern at the Defense Department this summer. While his internship hasn’t officially been canceled, it’s currently “up in the air,” Kapoor said, adding that it could impact his future academic career. He had been hoping to continue the internship into the fall.

“I’ve planned my four year plan around [the internship],” Kapoor said.

But still, Kapoor said he considers himself lucky.

“I do feel grateful that I’m in a situation where I’ve stayed healthy,” he said. “While I am disappointed, part of me says I shouldn’t be, considering there are many people who are in worse situations right now.”

Camren Lattimer, a freshman enrolled in letters and sciences, said his own plans were easily adaptable.

Lattimer said he intends to take online classes, hoping to gain between six and nine credits. But still, his situation isn’t perfect due to distractions of online school and working at home.

“In my situation, I would [still be taking these classes], because I’m looking to [become] a business major,” he said. “In my case it still works out well, but it’s still not as simplistic as I’d like it to be.”

[Read more: As finals approach, UMD students find new ways to sacrifice to Testudo]

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