Q&A with College Freshman

By: Clay Waller'21

 Freshman year at college has never been this unusual. College is usually a pathway to freedom for recent high school graduates, but this year it is the complete opposite. It was a tough decision for colleges to make if they were going to open their doors for the school year, but a good portion have brought their students back on campus. Unfortunately, these openings have resulted in over 321,000 covid cases as of November 19th, according to the New York Times. Continue reading for an inside look about how colleges are handling covid, from the perspectives of members of the SSSAS class of 2020. 

 

 How is college different than you expected with covid?

Isaac Ahdoot: “It’s different in almost every way. For one meeting people was a lot harder than I expected. Without classes in person or clubs it was harder to get out there.”

Noelia Vargas: “I expected it to be a hassle really, like getting tested every week and doing daily symptom checkers, but everything has gone pretty smoothly and covid restrictions seem so normal now.”

Evan Roper: “It’s a lot different due to all COVID protocols being so strict, Oregon is being very strict when it comes to gatherings and mask rules.”

 

 What are things you aren’t allowed to do because of covid?

Lili Abizaid : “You can’t go to parties, the frats were all closed, and the sororities couldn’t hold events. Which is again understandable, but something that isn’t allowed”

Tyson Tilch: “It’s definitely been much harder to meet people with COVID going on because of the restrictions put in place on gathering. I also rushed a fraternity in the fall and it was a challenge to rush with all the restrictions for sure.”

Ashlyn Lee: “People really emphasize meeting your professors in college but that wasn’t really possible. College parties were very much not allowed.”

 

How is your college addressing breaks?

Laetitia Haddad: “Georgetown planned the semester like we would be on campus, so they gave us no breaks - not even a long weekend! - from August 28th through to November 20th.”

Isaac Ahdoot: “For breaks we go back for thanksgiving and don’t come back until after New Years. Spring break is super wack. They almost completely got rid of it for us.”

Evan Roper: “They haven’t really changed anything too drastic about breaks”

 

What are some rules about masks?

Noelia Vargas: “The number one thing is they expect us to have masks on at all times except for when we are in our own dorm rooms or eating.”

Lili Abizaid: “Basically you have to wear them all the time, like 24/7.”

Tyson Tilch: “We have to wear masks inside all buildings unless we are in our room. And you aren’t required to wear one outside but many people still choose to”

 

Are you taking classes in person, all online, or hybrid? Are you living on campus?

Laetitia Haddad: “I'm living at home, and the University only offers housing to students in difficult circumstances - either their home life is unstable, they don't have access to the internet, or they live overseas in a crazy timezone.”

Ashlyn Lee: “I'm taking hybrid classes. two of my classes were stated to be in person but they sent out emails the day before to say they were online. I was so disappointed but at least I didn't have to walk all around campus.”

Evan Roper: “I am living on campus but all of my classes are online”

 

 What are some things you want to change with a vaccine?

Isaac Ahdoot: “Well first I’m hoping that we can go back to in person classes. It’s much harder to focus and get stuff done without a teacher.” “Also sports are a big one. I would love to have full attendance games at some point in college.”

Laetitia Haddad: “I want to be able to make friends and form relationships with my professors, and experience Georgetown in real life. ”

Noelia Vargas: “I think the main thing I’d hope changes with a vaccine is the classroom environment. I really miss interacting with my classmates more and actually knowing my teachers - it’s all so different with covid measures.”