We’re almost to the finish line for the semester. If you need to crawl to get there, that’s okay — we’re in a pandemic, after all.
This semester was so different from what I thought I’d be doing my senior year of college. I thought The Phoenix would be printing papers and goofing off — with some work in between — in our newsroom in the School of Communication basement. I thought I’d be hitting the Chicago nightlife scene with my close friends now that we’re 21. I thought I’d be preparing to graduate in-person.
I know these things seem trivial, but they’re what make college, college — and I know Loyola students are memorializing similar activities.
But even though we’re all missing our old rituals, I want you to take a moment and appreciate how far you’ve made it since March. Celebrate getting through the past few months.
I know I’m not alone when I say this semester has been the most isolating, taxing and emotionally exhausting semester of my college career. I’ve had way too much screen time for a normal person and the lack of separation between home and school life has been draining.
I think it’s been particularly tough due to worsening COVID-19 numbers and anxiety near midterms and finals. Also, college kids haven’t been able to release stress with friends by safely hanging out in social settings.
If your final grades aren’t the hottest they’ve ever been, try to take it easy on yourself. The hurdles you’ve jumped to get through life lately are so much more important than a less-than-desirable grade in a core class.
Arriving home in Denver hit me differently this year than it has other Thanksgivings, and it seems that way for other college students, too. As I stood on the curb waiting for family to pick me up, I watched as several college students reunited with family and wiped tears from their eyes.
American college students are just one tiny sliver of society that this awful, awful virus has affected — and finally, we’re all seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, even though there’s still a long way to go. I’m proud to think about how much stronger I am now than I was in January 2020.
We’re all stronger.
Pat yourself on the back and re-charge over the break. If you have the resources, do something nice for healthcare workers in your community. They’ve experienced the brunt of this virus and carried us through for months.
Spread some cheer, stay safe and enjoy your holiday season.
This week in News, read an article on an Edgewater woman who was selected to work on Joe Biden’s COVID-19 task force and a piece on how Loyola students are using Airbnb to live temporarily in Chicago.
In Opinion, look for an essay on the lack of diversity in course offerings — particularly philosophy.
In A&E, find a piece on how community members are working to keep a local bookstore afloat after the death of its owner and this month’s round of Phoenix playlist picks.
In Sports, read up on three women’s basketball newcomers who are making an instant impact on the squad and a piece on Loyola’s signing of 10 new athletes to spring sports.