• The Crestiad

CCC Signs Club adapts to new rules due to COVID-19

Cedar Crest students Jess Maddock and Breanna Cirello, posing to make three C’s in American Sign Language at the Rose Garden. Photo by Katherine Hood.

Katherine Hood


The CCC Signs Club has adjusted to the new rules at Cedar Crest College for the Fall semester of 2020, in response to the COVID-19 virus.

Asher Atwood is president of the club, assisted by vice president Lea Feldman, secretary Karter Ericsson, and treasurer Juliet Pearsall.

“We created this club, me a junior and two seniors last year, to provide the community an opportunity to learn American Sign Language as well as to learn about the deaf and hard of hearing community because it is not just learning about American Sign Language, it’s about learning their culture as well,” Atwood stated.

The club has focused its attention on multiple aspects within the deaf and hard of hearing community. One aspect is how to communicate with people within the community through the use of American Sign Language. It is a language-based upon hand gestures and facial expressions to communicate with other people.

“American Sign Language and the deaf and hard of hearing community really values facial expressions and emotions that come through, it’s not just signing it’s also acting it out,” Atwood replied.

With the Fall semester already started, the CCC Signs Club was moved online and meets every other Wednesday instead of being in-person to help decrease the spread of COVID-19.

“It’s kind of been a blessing in disguise, I think; it has really helped get more people involved,” Atwood said in regard to how COVID-19 affected the club. “We had to move online but with what we are doing it is easier to do it online than having to dance online or some other things. So, we are grateful that we are able to get it up and going online. But it loses that personal aspect since we are just sitting down in front of a computer rather than having a conversation and things like that.”

More than ever, communication has continued to be a struggle during the progression of the worldwide pandemic. With the mandatory requirement for public safety, everyone must wear masks within public areas to help protect themselves and others.

“In the case of COVID nowadays with everyone wearing masks across their face, it is really essential that people know sign language because the deaf community can’t read your lips anymore,” Feldman replied.

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