November 28, 2020

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Youth and pandemic – Clarity


By Giancarlo Vázquez López / CLARIDAD

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Three friends sitting on the sofa remember some of their experiences from the years of high school. Not much has happened of that. They have just graduated, like someone who says "online". They listen to music while one of them does a facial to the other. I intervene in the spa session at home. I ask my sister and her friends if I can ask them some questions. I explain the reason. They accept with a little shyness.

The three studied cosmetology at the Antonio Reyes Padilla Vocational School in Utuado, although one of them finished her studies at the Petra Corretjer School in O'Neill, in Manatí. The ClariChicas do not judge me, the first thing I asked them was: What is cosmetology? And what is its importance?

Marialexa Vázquez López, Greleris N. Lozada Torres and Juliana M. Alago Pérez agreed that cosmetology is the care and beautification of skin, nails and hair. Regarding its importance, hygiene and self-esteem stood out, mainly. But feeling good about yourself and looking different is equally essential, both for the client and for the cosmetologist. "Beauty has no age," emphasized Alago Pérez.

What do you think about your last year at high ?

Greleris (G) – This year was difficult since taking face-to-face classes where you are listening to the teacher is not the same, you can ask him and he can clarify doubts. You can come to understand everything correctly. It is not the same as having to be receiving and sending jobs by email and asking for explanations that you may not understand, sending the jobs as best you could. Just like taking virtual exams … It was really difficult, but finally you do the best you can to achieve what you want.

Juliana (J) – It was frustrating, we lost many things that we wanted and for which we we strive. Simple things like sharing, having a graduation where we could give each other kisses and hugs, the activities to raise money and all those things.

Marialexa (M) – When I thought about the fourth year, it was totally opposite to what it was. The teachers answered me quite quickly; but if not, he did the work as he liked and sent it.

How does this whole situation affect you in terms of the projections you have?

G – I made the decision that until the system is fixed, I will not enroll, because I don't want to risk going wrong and having to repeat classes because I'm studying virtual. I want to go to university because I really want to learn what I am going to study, not because I have a degree. The fact that I do not want to enroll because they are not face-to-face classes does not mean that I want to stop studying and stop doing my things. Either now or later I am clear on what I want.

J – I want to study, but I don't want to do it by computer when I don't know if I am going to understand it. I agree with her. In the institute where I am going to study it is a theory class and the rest is practical. This is why I do not know if it is worthwhile to enroll now. I called the institute and they told me that they were verifying if they could reduce the number of students for certain hours so that two could go in person to the class; but that's not for sure and that's why I haven't registered yet. Admission is already paid, whenever I want I can go and enroll in the course I want. I don't have a fixed date to start.

M – I am a little discouraged by the wait and the insecurity because they were not the plans I had. I wanted to finish high and start fast. At the moment, in the institute the classes are going to be face-to-face because they are practical courses. If they continue like this I am going to start, but at the institute to which I am going to request enrollment it is also weekly, it is always open. You can enter the same whenever you want.

These were his specific answers to the questions, but among them, from some ramblings, certain things came up that I do not want to overlook, since perhaps they expose the reality of many students in the country's public schools. I summarize them for lack of materials, teachers and comfort:

M – There were air in two classrooms. The workshop had air this year because in the past it did not have. They put it around mid to late eleven; in ten there was not. It is difficult to iron and blower like this …

G – In my school, in August, there was no Spanish teacher. The teacher arrived about 3 months later, it was like 2 weeks and something happened that he did not teach us again and in December a teacher came from Utuado. We finished the semester with her, but we lost about 5 months of the Spanish class …

J – We had no English teacher. And the Spanish one withdrew …

M – We had one last semester and another this semester. The tremors passed and about two weeks after we returned it was when it arrived. In English, that we were left without a teacher as in September, the teacher also arrived this semester.

In spite of everything, none of the setbacks mentioned above has prevented these three young women from Utuado and Ciales from giving up their professional aspirations. Lozada Torres is going to pursue a bachelor's degree in Business Administration with a concentration in accounting. Alago Pérez will continue in the field of aesthetics. Vázquez López, will study advanced cosmetology and barbering.

Because we know how difficult it is to stand up and fight in our country, CLARIDAD wishes all the young people who have graduated or are about to graduate the best of the future. Until victory!



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