Perspective: Life in College
College life throughout the pandemic has not been the most exciting time, but there seems to be a beacon of hope on the horizon. Although this year has been packed with COVID-19 tests twice a week, daily symptom surveys, and classes only at low occupancy, Boston University has declared everything will be back to “normal” starting in the Fall 2021 semester.
Even though living such a socially distant life has obviously not been the most ideal, it will definitely be interesting to look back five years from now and see all the practices that we have fully become accustomed to, or in 20 years to tell future generations about the terrible year of 2020.
For example, putting a mask on seems second nature to me, and I even catch myself walking around my apartment with it on for a few minutes after I get home. The thought of doing that would never cross my mind in 2019, and if someone would’ve told me my future looked like this I would’ve thought they were absolutely insane.
Also, the idea of going to a restaurant and being sectioned off by plexiglass is something I never thought I would have seen. Although now I don’t think twice about masks, social distancing or getting my temperature checked before entering class, I cannot wait for the day that I never have to do any of these things again.
In terms of college life, there are so many little things that I did not realize I would miss so much and look forward to in the start of the new school year. I cannot wait until I am able to whisper back and forth to my friend sitting directly next to me in class because Zoom chat is not cutting it.
Additionally, I am beyond excited to go into a lively Student Union and not one that is socially distant and as quiet as the library. And of course and probably above all, I am in desperate need of actually having a social life, where I don’t freak myself out that I have been exposed to COVID-19 because I hung out with someone or ate in a restaurant.
Hopefully with administering the vaccine, it will be a saving grace for many schools and workplaces alike, so we can all go back to enjoying the little things. Even though the pandemic was terrible and probably the worst thing I have ever lived through, it also was a pretty relevant time to be a science student. There is truly so much that I have learned about the virus, immune responses and vaccine mechanisms throughout the past year, and I without a doubt would not have been as educated on these topics without it.
Additionally, though I have always known I have wanted to go into the medical field, these topics and watching the science unfold really inspired me to want to do something in research in the future. I know the pandemic has been full of some heartbreak, tragedy and isolation, yet there seems to be light at the end of this tunnel for everyone.
Paige Beaudry is a junior at Boston University. She is a 2018 graduate of Hammonton High School.