Last semester has been described as a kind of limbo—with fewer COVID health restrictions and more in-person classes and activities, but under the cloud of a stubborn pandemic.
What was it like to be on a college campus as the Delta variant surged?
To find out, we connected with students on five campuses around the country, asking them to share moments from the fall that epitomized this unusual time, nearly two years into the global pandemic.
One thing that was notably different, was adjusting to returning to physical classrooms.
For Umreen Imam, a grad student at the University of Houston-Downtown, that meant trying to put faces to voices she had heard in online courses. “Everyone would log onto Zoom, but no one would have their cameras on. So you would just hear their voice and not know what they look like,” she says. “I remember texting members in my group what color shirt I was wearing so that they would be able to tell who I was.”
Other students featured in this episode of the EdSurge Podcast include:
Maggie Borgen, a first-year student at Boston University who started a podcast back in high school about student life during COVID called Second Semester Seniors.
Audrey Mullen, a senior at Boston College majoring in economics with a minor in international studies.
Wyatt Didway, a student at Oregon State University-Cascades who was part of a class project his freshman year, where he and other students wrote journal entries about what life was like during that first full academic year during COVID. Highlights of those journal entries were recently published in a book called “There Is No College in COVID: Selections From the Oregon State University-Cascades Student Journaling Project.”
Marjorie Blen, a student at San Francisco State University who shared her experiences earlier in the pandemic as part of our previous podcast series, Pandemic Campus Diaries.
Their dispatches show that it’s a time marked by uncertainty, and sometimes not even knowing what to hope for.
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