The new normal – Day 5

March 21, 2020

Jordyn Toscano, @jordyntoscano

Editor’s note: “The new normal” is a continuing series that looks into how members of the Los Medanos College community are coping with a shelter-in-place order amid the COVID-19 pandemic. 

As the shelter-in-place order in California continues, the students and staff of Los Medanos College continue to adjust to their “new normal” while maintaining their own health and safety during the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Part-time student and amateur rapper Ryan Tryner has found the transition from in-person to online classes more challenging than he expected.

Tryner, currently enrolled in both Statistics and Studio Music Production, has found the shift online for his Statistics class considerably easier than the shift online for his music class.

“My stats teacher just sent me a ton of work to do and said give it back when school reopens,” said Tryner.

While some professors have found it easiest to use Canvas discussion posts and assignments to reach students, other professors have found it challenging to adjust to this online format without the use of conference calls and Zoom meetings.

“My music teacher has been giving assignments every week and I gotta do my project at home instead of the MIDI lab. We’re supposed to have a conference call on Monday,” explained Tryner.

As an avid music student and rapper, Tryner has found that the impact of a hands-on music class is much more profound than the struggle of trying to learn those same technical skills, without the necessary equipment, online.

“It [going online] has definitely affected the class, mainly because this class is mostly hands-on in the lab and a lot of students don’t have what is needed at home and that’s why they’re in the class,” said Tryner.

Because the majority of music courses are considered labs, professors have been challenged in adjusting to the lack of resources and online platforms they were provided. 

Resources typically provided in the music lab can range anywhere from keyboards and microphones to Pro Tools and mixing consoles — all resources that the majority of students do not have access to at home.

Although students may not have access to all of these assets at home, Tryner has found a way to produce some music of his own from his room.

To listen to one of Tryner’s few published songs during the shelter in place, go to