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Dealing with the Pandemic

Christos Yiatrou C'22

mount st. mary's university campus

Hello Mounties! Fall break has ended and as we resume classes I can't stop thinking about this time last year. Due to the pandemic, life was different at the Mount which meant no fall break. As upsetting as it was to find out we would not have a fall break for obvious reasons, you really learn to appreciate them now. Looking back to last year, it is noticeable how far the Mount community has come. Many of us were lucky enough to be in the classroom. Meanwhile, I still have friends at other universities who are juniors and only know their professor by their Zoom profile picture. It is hard to deny how lucky we are as students to have some sort of normality back in the classroom; it just goes to show that it paid off choosing the Mount.  

I’ve got to admit that getting through college while in a pandemic has taught me a lot of patience. In the beginning it was a bit chaotic. I remember being home around mid-March and thinking how much of a breeze the rest of school will be online. Oh how wrong I was. It was dreadful.  

There are many factors that I think played a role in why it was so awful. I'm sure some may agree that not being able to leave your home for a couple of months can take a toll on you, especially as college students. I absolutely love my family, don’t get me wrong, but my independent freedom was completely lost during the rest of the semester at home. I found it hard at first to find opportunities to have time to myself while not being able to leave the house.  

The coming fall semester brought on a whole new challenge for all of us. I chose to come back to Emmitsburg at the right time because New Jersey lockdowns may have prevented me from being able to get to Maryland. I finally had the freedom I craved without my parents on my back and a clear mindset to start the academic year right. As a commuter, I would be in the classroom two out of five days a week. This gave me lots of free time which prompted me to get a job nearby. Getting a job during that time really kept me on the ball knowing I would have to get my work done a lot earlier.  

The 19-20 academic year was a challenging year for both professors and students. Adjusting to the new class environment on Zoom was something we all didn’t want to do but had to. Let's be honest, learning from Zoom is far different from learning in the classroom. COVID made me realize that the best way for me to learn is in the classroom and I'm sure I'm not alone.  

Overall, most of us want to one day forget that this pandemic even happened. The reality of it is that it was a time that truly tested our patience through the challenge of adapting to a completely unfamiliar environment. Coming back this year made me feel like a first-year student on campus again. It was the first time in over a year where you actually see students freely walking the campus which was a refreshing sight to see.  

If anything, COVID has taught us a thing or two about ourselves in a short amount of time. Life will continue to throw obstacles like this pandemic at us, but we just have to adapt and adjust.  That’s all for this week! Be sure to check out some of my other classmates blogs on My View of MSMU. 

Christos Yiatrou C'22