College freshmen across the country are experiencing a strange first semester due to the disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, writes Marie Fazio for The New York Times.
Wayne native Molly Cordray, a biology major at Gettysburg College, had to adjust her campus life two weeks into the semester when the college experienced a spike in coronavirus cases.
Gettysburg instituted a campus-wide quarantine, canceling all in-person classes and instructing students to not leave their rooms unless they were going to use the bathroom or pick up food. They were also told to not chat or linger in the hallway … and to not do their laundry.
“In terms of the actual freshman experience, we don’t really have one,” said Cordray.
However, students were given assurances that any first-year traditions they missed, such as walking to the spot where Abraham Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address, would be made up.
Since then, the lockdown has been lifted, and all but first-year students have been sent home to learn virtually. That’s left few opportunities to meet new people.
“It’s really the isolation that gets to you,” said Cordray.
Read more about the first semester amidst a pandemic in The New York Times here.
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