New Year, New Visions

Members of our staff make predictions for the new year

Photo+Credit%3A+Uriel+Rodriguez

Photo Credit: Uriel Rodriguez

 

COVID PREDICTIONS

One year ago, nobody would have imagined a pandemic raging across the globe, yet that’s exactly what happened. COVID-19 has been raging for almost one year and the future is now in the hands of the federal government approving the Pfizer vaccine and maybe others, and then distributing them throughout the country as soon as possible.

According to a projection constructed by covid19.healthdata.org, the latest data suggests that by January of 2021, the death toll in the United States will be 348,310, a staggering amount considering that the flu season has arrived, along with families traveling for the holidays, potentially spreading the virus to even more people. Predictions indicate that COVID-19 cases will continue to rise and will eventually reach “1,000,000 to 2,300,000 new cases reported during the week ending January 2, 2021,” according to a December 9 forecast by the Center for Disease Control. 

The COVID-19 vaccine that everyone has been waiting for was recently rolled out in the United Kingdom. On December 10, the Food Drug Administration approved the Pfizer vaccine for emergency use in the United States. The Pfizer vaccine was rolled out on December 14, with the first doses already arriving across all 50 states. The CDC claims that “supplies will increase over time, and all adults should be able to get vaccinated later in 2021.” The CDC also states that studies will need to continue as there is the uncertainty of how effective the vaccine will be towards young children and the side effects that will occur once the vaccine is injected.

 

POLITICAL PREDICTIONS

The election of a new president after the controversial term of Donald Trump means Americans could see many changes coming. President-elect Joe Biden has made many ambitious promises for his first 100 days within office, and he will most likely meet many of them. Progressive Democrats and Democratic-Socialists will willingly criticize Biden for his moderate maneuvers, but will almost certainly appreciate his presence in the white house. With Biden promising to increase taxes for corporations, rejoin the World Health Organization (WHO), distribute more than 100 million COVID-19 vaccines, and make the United States a leader in fighting climate change, he has set the bar high. Whether the senate ends in control of Republicans or Democrats, Biden will most likely use his senate experience to negotiate and push his plans through.

 

SCHOOL PREDICTIONS

With the COVID-19 vaccine finally being released to the public, many are wondering what the school year holds for students and teachers. Next year, school will almost definitely stay mixed between in-person and online learning. Because the distribution of the vaccine will take time, we are likely still a long way off from seeing full student and teacher faces without the barrier of a mask.

“[I] just take it day by day; we are here until we are not. All it takes is an outbreak somewhere and then the state would say ‘No, sorry. We’re closing down, going remote’. And that’s what we would do. It is what it is until they tell us to do different[ly],” said Jared Patton, civics teacher.

It is confirmed that all students will be going to school in person for at least the first week after winter break, except those with highly susceptible family members. While this may not be the best idea, it certainly could help with the transition to 100% in-person learning if we get the vaccine in the coming months.

 

BUSINESS PREDICTIONS

The year 2020 was one that changed the dynamic of shopping and how businesses operate. With most shoppers quarantining or filled with anxiety about going out and potentially exposing themselves to the virus, many businesses have had to move their stores online. In 2021, the release of the COVID-19 vaccine will most likely be slowly distributed to the general public, allowing for businesses to go back to traditional ways of making money. However, because of the success of online shopping, many businesses and industries will maintain their online presence. The world has become digital, and all of the population’s money is ripe for the taking.