Upon hearing the unfortunate news that Penn State has canceled in-person classes for the rest of the spring semester, I can not help but cry over all those memories with my friends that I will never get to have—that sense of closure and proper goodbye to my college town and everyone in it.
Here are some of the things that I was looking forward to most that are no longer a possibility, as a result of the coronavirus:
1. 55 Days of Cafe
Ever since I was a freshman, I could not wait until it was my turn to celebrate those last few months with my friends by taking part in this senior year tradition. I would see those happy seniors sitting at the outdoor tables on my way to class and think about how one day that would be me, ending a long day of classes with a good old day drink.
2. Friday nights at the ShandyGaff
$6 Pitchers of Strawberry Lemonade... I'll take two, please! Every Friday night my friends and I would go to this bar. It was the only thing that got us through a long week of classes and exams. Although not the most popular bar in State College, we always had the most fun here jamming out to the many throwback songs.
3. Post-going out food trips
After a night out with friends, we would always get some food on the way home before recapping the night at Beaver Hill. Sometimes these late-night talks were even more fun than the actual night out! I'll never forget the time when the Bagel Crust worker nicely charged my friend's phone after leaving it there at 2 A.M.
Although at this time Penn State has only postponed our graduation rather than outright canceling it, the future of it does not look promising with so many other universities already canceling theirs. I am devastated that my four years of hard work may not be properly celebrated... that I will never walk across the BJC stadium and receive my diploma.
5. My apartment
Located in the perfect spot downtown, nice and close to all my classes and the bars, my apartment was the ideal place to unwind and order something from Grubhub after class. I loved having a space of my own for the first time to host wine nights and have friends visit on the weekends.
6. Dirty Sprites from Champs
7. Classes in Thomas Building
I think it is virtually impossible not to have a class in this building. I had my first class here as a freshman and did not expect my last time here to be before spring break!
8. Sunny days spent on the Hub Lawn/Old Main
I looked forward to the sunny, spring days spent relaxing outside with my Jamba Juice after classes.
9. Walks up the dreaded Shortlidge Hill
Although I was out of breath by the time I made it to my Thomas class, that route was a good source of daily exercise.
10. The Whoop
Who would have thought it was possible to miss a public transportation system so much?!?! The Whoop was always there for me since freshmen year (will always remember the fun rides from East Halls to the frats) and has never failed to get me to where I needed to be despite rain, snow, and sleet.
11. The Lib
The library was a place of comfort for me, an escape from any roommate drama and a place where I could get all my work done. I will miss the time spend there hanging with friends and studying for exams on third floor Paterno.
12. The Creamery
Home of legendary ice cream and even better (in my personal opinion) lemonade, I would have loved to stop here one last time before graduating.
13. Having everyone within walking distance
Gone are the days where my Snap Map was full of friends nearby to hang out with! Being back home these last few weeks has really shown me how much I miss everyone.
14. Living in a town where everyone is your own age
I really miss running into so many familiar faces on my walks to class and around downtown State College. It's such a sad thought that you will never be in a town of so many people your own age again in your life :(
15. Actually having a chance at love
This point kind of goes along with the last one, but after being home these last few weeks I have seen how bad my options are locally and would do anything to give State College love a shot again!
16. Drake Bell performing at the Phyrst
Who wouldn't want to see one of their favorite childhood stars at a bar downtown ?!?! First the Jonas Brothers and now Drake Bell coming (before the semester was suddenly canceled) could have been yet another highlight of my senior year.
17. "We Are" chants
The spring semester was the time where all the accepted student visits would occur. You couldn't go anywhere without seeing groups of incoming freshmen on tours with the guide shouting "We Are."
18. Morning Starbucks trips
I never got to say a proper goodbye to my favorite Starbucks employee who would always have my Strawberry Acai Refreshers ready to go before my 9 A.M. classes.
19. Having my ID bent a million and one times at Sharkies
Got to love being 22 and looking 12...this was where I would buy all my alcohol conveniently located near my apartment and after the first few trips, they knew me by name!
20. The Willard Preacher
This man is a Penn State staple that I will never have the pleasure of listening to again in the near future. It was also interesting watching him debate controversial topics with students between classes, and I would love to see what he would have thought about the Coronavirus.
21. The Blue and White Game
Words can not express how upset I am that we will not be gathering outside of Beaver Stadium this April with family and friends for one last tailgate! This event was the best part of the spring semester hands down, and it just doesn't feel right having it canceled, especially as a senior.
22. Graduation pictures with friends
Last of all, with the rest of the semester being canceled, it is going to be SO much more difficult to get everyone together to take graduation pictures at the Lion Shrine and other iconic spots at Penn State.