College Life Before and After COVID-19

College Life before COVID-19

College life before the pandemic was about partying, late-night study sessions, college events, trips, and whatnot. The students who were studying abroad took this opportunity to go about and explore the new country. Making new friends and sharing a dorm room with friends was the highlight of the year. Most of the universities offered on-campus facilities of the gym, sports activities, etc. The college cafeteria or the food court is one of the most special places for the students to hang out. Food is one of the greatest things that people bond over, and this is one thing that will be missed in post-COVID times. With all the eateries being closed and no contact policy, food will also not be something that people will be able to bond over.

Lesson Learnt By Students during Pandemic

When the quarantine period started, no one realized that things would go south so quickly. Within days, over half of the world was in lockdown, classes were canceled, and all the students staying in hostels were directed to return home. In the beginning, everything was fun and games, but then reality started to kick in. The holidays are always fun but they also mean you will get to meet friends and family back home, but this wasn’t an ordinary holiday. The exchange or international students who couldn’t return to their homes because of travel restrictions were limited to the dorm rooms. Having friends when you are away from your family is a blessing, but the pandemic restricted that as well. Realizing what family and friends mean and how we take the little things for granted will be the greatest take away from the pandemic and life after it.

Spending Valuable Time with Family

Once you start professional college, students often do not get enough time to spend back home with family. Even when they are home on the holidays, they spend most of the time meeting old friends or going on adventures. The dining table conversation or the living room political discussions are almost lost. But this pandemic has brought the entire family together. It has made people realize the importance of family and relationships. College life was almost always about grades and quizzes but now it is more about managing your education but also spending time with the people you truly love. Almost all universities post COVID-19 are offering online courses and classes so that minimum contact policy is ensured. Studying from home will also reduce the expenses involved with logistics and eating out. This also takes a lot of responsibility off the shoulders of the parents.

College Life after the Lockdown is Lifted

Problems arise with online applications through which universities conduct online lectures or seminars. Some universities have announced that they are abandoning the Zoom platform and switching to Google Meet or other applications. Students found it valuable and they had a great experience, except a few, who have some internet issues. Due to hacker attacks, online education at several leading universities was temporarily suspended. The students had no other option to stay updated on the lectures and their curriculum. A concept such as Zoombombing had emerged, characterizing actions related to the violation of online spaces, including hacking virtual classrooms, posting pornographic or hateful images, shouting obscene language, etc. Taking this pandemic as an opportunity, several software companies are developing platforms like Zoom that are much more advanced and promise newer features.

Rethinking Career Plans

The pandemic is especially hard for the students who are passing out this year; with the unemployment rates soaring high, job opportunities are scarce. The pandemic has left a number of people jobless and even more hopeless about finding a suitable job. During the college’s final year, many companies have their job fairs, allowing them to find a suitable job. But during the pandemic and even after the lockdown is lifted, this will not be possible. Job fairs gather a large crowd and that is not feasible under the current circumstances. The students passing out this year will have to rethink their career plans; a remote job is an attractive prospect to explore.

Problems after the Pandemic

Despite the pandemic running rampant, around 1,000 academic institutions, including colleges and universities, have begun to welcome students back to the institutions. However, according to the New York Times, it is nearly impossible for the educational institutes to get back to their normal operations and teaching styles as it was before the pandemic. The reopened colleges and universities are currently unable to keep the things as they were before; of course, it is impossible. The colleges’ administration and management are afraid of three factors: the COVID-19 spread, ignoring social distancing causing the university to halt operations and students’ drop-out rate. They need to be very careful while operating the institutions. From the students’ perspective, students are not allowed to remove their masks at any time when they are near people and large gatherings are completely banned.

Conclusion

Social distancing is being maintained in the lecture halls; this distance may seem awkward but saves a lot of lives. College life before and after the Pandemic will be very different; the SOPs alone are to enough to overwhelm students.

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