Kent State senior stays positive even though COVID-19 cut anticipated Italy trip short


The students and staff returned to the states in March but Grace Beck said she still hasn't received any money back

(WKBN) – Most people have been affected by COVID-19, some more drastically than others. Case and point, a Kent State University senior from East Liverpool who had her study abroad program cut short. She had to deal with it both emotionally and financially.

It wasn’t Grace Beck’s first time in Italy, but for years she dreamt about going back and exploring on her own.

“I worked really hard, crazy hours in the summer, and I would work like three or two jobs and I think I saved all my money for like three years,” she said.

The study abroad program started in January and was supposed to end in May, but things started to take a turn.

“January was good, everything was fine. February was good, but the virus is still getting a little weird. By the end of February, everything went down really quickly,” she said

Beck said that’s when she heard rumors about the program possibly not being able to continue. It was in early March when she received an unexpected email that her program was cut short.

“I balled my eyes out for like hours I was so devastated, me and my friends, we all did,” she said.

The students and staff returned to the states in March but Beck said she still hasn’t received any money back.

“We haven’t got any refunds for classes switching from in-person to remote and we didn’t get our rent back,” she said.

Now, Beck is at home for the summer trying to fulfill her graduation requirements as a visual communication design major. But of course, COVID-19 has affected that too.

“I can’t graduate until I get an internship for credit in my major, which is super frustrating. I think I applied to around 35 internships,” she said.

Beck said even though she’s going through these tough times, there’s a positive side to it. Now, she can spend time with her family.

“There’s always people that are going through worse than you. So I’m thankful I made it home safe and everything. I have a roof over my head and I have food and everything,” she said.

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