Fall 2020 was our first full pandemic semester, and it was by far the worst one yet.
We were treated unfairly by universities that valued money over our lives and safety. We struggled to motivate ourselves for online classes and had professors who either didn't understand or didn't care about what we were going through. We were isolated from our friends and practically unable to meet new people. We lost out on a semester of the "college experience" because we wanted to be careful yet saw our classmates' lack of empathy as they continued to go to bars. We fought for racial and social justice on our campuses and were continuously ignored. We didn't do as well as we had hoped. We didn't do as much as we had planned.
This semester, to put it frankly, sucked, but now it is officially over.
With the close of the semester and my final grades posted, it's been hard to focus on anything but the bad of the past four months that somehow felt like four days and four years at the same time. The bad is overpowering, overwhelming. Yet to say this semester was all bad is far from the truth, so I want to use this article to highlight some of the good that I experienced and that I hope others can relate to or use as a springboard to think of their own good moments.
I got out of bed every morning, even on days when it was incredibly hard to do so. I went to almost every class and completed every assignment.
I officially started journalism school and could feel my writing improve with every piece. My professor used multiple assignments of mine as examples. I wrote a final article that I am beyond proud of.
I took my first class for grad school.
I completed an internship and raised more than $1,200. Ten articles I wrote got published. I got to interview a professor and researcher I admire.
I took my favorite class of all time and learned more from it than any other class I have taken thus far.
I managed to make connections with people, even if it was just over Zoom.
I got a tattoo that I've been wanting for a long time. I dyed my hair purple (for a few weeks).
I challenged myself by applying for new opportunities, and while some of them didn't work out, I still can say that I tried.
I moved in with my five best friends and got to spend every day with them. I visited my friends from high school who go to a different school. I made new memories with my favorite people.
So yes, Fall 2020 was the worst semester I've experienced so far, but it was also full of laughter, smiles, learning and victories of all shapes and sizes.