“I don’t care about Hamlet when there’s hundreds of thousands of people sick and dying. It just doesn’t feel important,” says Bedford, NY senior Ethan Karas.
He’s not the only one. COVID-19 has forced my own son, Peter, and millions of other young folks to learn digitally from home as school buildings and campuses have been shuttered in 47 states, four territories and the District of Columbia.
194 countries have closed schools, universities and colleges … impacting about 98.5% of the world’s student population.
“Most kids will ride this out and probably write some interesting college application essays about it”, says Seth Pollak, a psychology professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
And while some students could struggle with the loss of in-school face-to-face time with their peers, others who associate those hallway interactions with stress and anxiety could actually be finding some relief.
In any case, the use of distance learning and open educational apps has soared whether students like it or not.
Commenting on the new reality, Bridget Terry Long, dean of the Harvard Graduate School of Education (HGSE) says this:
When you’re online, if you’re doing something like Zoom or video chats, all the students are now in the front row … People who don’t tend to speak up can ask questions … Teachers are better able to gauge who’s understanding versus who’s not.
On the more pessimistic side … not everyone has been able to make the switch successfully. If you’re in a small crowded apartment with multiple kids and one piece of technology … I do worry about those students falling behind.
I hope each and every student is able to adjust to the “new education”. Nevertheless, all this spells solid investment opportunities in the industry. Here’s my top three picks.
1. Strategic Education, Inc. (NASDAQ: STRA) provides a host of post-secondary education options in the United States. Its Strayer University “campus” offers various programs for working adults … including an executive MBA program online via its Jack Welch Management Institute. The firm’s Capella University offers degrees as well, plus non-degree web and application software development courses in addition to self-paced online learning.
2. Universal Technical Institute, Inc. (NYSE: UTI) offers specialized technical education for students seeking careers as professional automotive, diesel, collision repair, motorcycle and marine technicians in the United States. Its “campus” includes Universal Technical Institute, Motorcycle Mechanics Institute, Marine Mechanics Institute and NASCAR Technical Institute.
3. Finally, we have Chegg, Inc. (NYSE: CHGG), which operates a direct-to-student learning platform for school-age kids. It provides online textbooks, study guides, writing guides and tools designed to help kids pass tests. It even supplies human help via its network of live tutors.
Chegg has really shined … more than doubling since its low on March 18. In fact, I recommended Chegg in my Coronavirus Financial Survival Guide, which you can access here.
All the best,