COVID-19 and the Struggle Over CUNY Tuition

HUNTER COLLEGE–Before the coronavirus wreaked its havoc, Lael Manalo’s days started early and ended late. The Hunter College senior’s lifestyle featured long commutes and full days of work followed by evening classes.

Manalo began working as a dental assistant this past year to help cover her tuition. Before she lost her job due to COVID-19, the full-time student worked between 22 and 26 hours per week across the four days the dentist’s office she worked at was open. “Not only was it a challenge to find time to do homework,” she said. “It was a challenge to find time and stay sane.”