Obviously, COVID-19 has impacted all of us differently. We asked a few creators to share what it's been like, what the initial response was, and how we can benefit those around us.
Meet The Panel:
Where are you spending quarantine? What's the vibe?
Jessica- I'm spending my time in quarantine back at home. It's a weird feeling being home and it's the first time I've been home for longer than two weeks in like two years. It's taken a lot of getting used to and has been pretty stressful being home, and I have a lot of responsibilities here so it makes me miss the freedom of college!
Emma- I'm spending time in my apartment and the vibe is pretty chill. There's not much of a schedule and sometimes we eat cinnamon rolls.
Amanda- I'm home in Austin, as the Pi Phi house gave us a few week's notice and told us sayonara. I'm really enjoying spending time with my siblings, a 26 and a 13-year-old who could not be more different, that love to help me break the stereotype of middle children being peacemakers. Austin is beautiful, I spend lots of time in nature, online school sucks, my dogs are great and my aesthetic is popping off right now. Missing A&M.
How do you feel about our university's response to COVID-19?
Jessica- I felt like Texas A&M made a smart decision in closing school, especially since we are one of the biggest study abroad and international universities in the nation. It doesn't mean I like it, and I definitely miss living in College Station. I sincerely hope next semester isn't affected!
Emma- I feel like the university took the correct response, but it doesn't mean that a lot of people aren't let down right now.
Amanda- I couldn't see A&M reacting any other way, and it was the correct response.
When did you start to know it was serious? When did you start taking action?
Jessica- I knew it was serious whenever I started seeing the death tolls in Italy when everything first started closing down. Seeing that on the news actually made me start crying, realizing how many lives have been affected and lost this past month or so.
Emma- I started to know that it was serious when they shut down the elementary schools and I realized that I didn't get to go back to work.
Amanda- I was on my last day of spring break in Florida, returning from a lengthy beach walk when my friends told me about A&M transitioning to online school. I got a horrible sinking feeling in my stomach and I could feel the panic rising in my throat. I immediately thought back to a week earlier, when I made a joke to my sister about corona being a thing of the past, as it had seemingly disappeared from the news. It seemed like such a foolish thought, and I immediately wanted to drive home to Austin.
What do you miss most about being on campus?
Jessica- I miss the freedom of being able to hang out with my friends and have fun, and having my own schedule. My classes also felt a lot more important and applicable in person since I was able to focus better. I miss the community and the people.
Emma- I really miss seeing people banner holding, people catching up in the Library with one another, that kid whos running across campus because they're late to something. I miss the energy and socialization.
Amanda- I miss seeing other human beings, interacting with strangers, even the potential of meeting someone is such a delicacy right now. I miss noticing painfully awkward new couples navigating campus and their new relationships. I miss the sight of a seasoned professor strolling through campus with comfortable ease, as though it could be done with his or her eyes closed. I miss the kids zipping past me on Texas on their mopeds. Heck, I even miss taking the bus.
What's something you didn't realize you'd miss?
Jessica- I didn't realize how much I would miss going to coffee shops to study or having study dates with my friends, especially new ones I had met in class this semester. I loved my professors and the people in my classes!
Emma- I didn't realize how much I'd miss my professors, especially since I picked my schedule completely centered around them.
Amanda- I'll say it, Paying for things with dining dollars.
What's the first thing you're doing when you get back?
Jessica- I love Emma's idea! I'd love to eno on campus somewhere drinking my classic Strawberry Acai from Quadbucks.
Emma- I will be going to the big grassy field outside of the Liberal Arts building and having a picnic when we get to go back.
Amanda- Happy crying, stuffing my face with Fuego, and putting together my room for next year.
How are you helping those around you?
Jessica- I'm really trying to be much more intentional with my friends and reading out to them to FaceTime or check in on them to see how they are doing. It's hard for so many people right now but I'm trying to encourage everyone and let them know someone is thinking of them from afar!
Emma- I'm trying to be better about reaching out to my friends and asking them how they're doing.
Amanda- I'm doing my best to maintain a positive attitude and to have some serious perspective. In comparison to others around the world right now, I have it so easy, so I am trying to maintain that mindset, keep people I care about safe and spend my days being thankful.