When I left Ole Miss two days before spring break to go to Disney World, I had no idea I would not be returning to school. But who really knows what lies ahead?
A few days before we were scheduled to return, I received an email saying we had four days to come back and get essential things that we need for class, leaving everything else behind. I didn’t know what I was feeling at that time about having the rest of the semester conducted online.
A lot of emotions flickered through my mind – sadness that I would not get to see my friends, anger that I would not be able to perform this semester, and concern about how I would be able to do my classes online knowing I have a poor connection.
Realistically, I know I wasn’t the only one feeling these things. Many other students were also expected to leave the campus for safety from the COVID-19. However, doing classes online caused a whole new level of stress I have never felt before.
I live in a place with little to no internet. It’s a rare occurrence to actually have great internet or let alone see it.
When I was at college, I was involved in a lot of student organizations, so my schedule, putting it mildly, was packed. However, now that I am in quarantine, most of the organizations have stopped running until the next school year, so now it’s less packed, but still pretty hectic.
My classes vary daily. On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, I have a 10 a.m. class, a 1 p.m. class, and a 3 p.m. class. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, I have a 9:30 a.m. class and a 3 p.m. There is also my online class I’m taking that doesn’t have a set schedule.
Doing my classes online is an experience, to say at least. When I lose connection during the middle of a lecture, I feel like pulling my hair out because, what if the teacher thinks I hung up on purpose.
The only platforms we are using are Zoom and Skype. On the flip side, I like using these two for my classes because they are similar and easy to use.
When the coronavirus was first mentioned, I feel like a bunch of people didn’t take it seriously because it didn’t originate in the U.S. However, when the first case happened here, many people were unprepared because we, Americans, haven’t dealt with anything like this before.
Naturally, I was curious about this new disease, so I decided to research it and found something very interesting. It seems that a pandemic occurs every 100 years: the plague in 1720, the Cholera outbreak in 1820, the Spanish flu in 1920, and now, the COVID-19 in 2020.
There are some things that we, as Americans, take for granted. We not as invincible as we like to think we are.
It’s okay to not be prepared; nobody really is. But this virus should show us we need to be ready for these types of things.
However, like many others, I have decided to accept my fate to be quarantined for safety. It’s not that bad, honestly, when you find or have something to do.
One thing I have been doing is planning and organizing my stuff for the next semester. Even though we don’t know when we will go back, it’s always good to be prepared.
Another thing I’ve been doing is watching Korean shows and learning K-pop dances. And finally, I have also been reading books and fan fictions and writing more. My handwriting has improved a lot.
Even though I accepted my fate, I really want to go back to school in fall. I have a list of fun things planned for my junior year. And it would also be great to not worry about doing classes online.
It would be great to see my friends again and participate in the clubs I left behind in the middle of spring semester. It would be great to perform K-pop dances in the fall, fingers-crossed. I was planning on moving into my first college apartment.
Here’s some final advice. Please have a plan in the future for another emergency like this. You never know what else might happen.
Please follow social distancing guidelines. They were put into place for a reason.
And finally, be safe and take things more seriously. And listen to what the state and government has to say.
Aaliyah Goldman, 20, is a junior majoring in mathematics with a double minor in Korean and digital media studies.
Goldman is a member of five campus organizations. She is in Ole Miss Generation (a K-Pop dance group), IMAGE (an engineering group for minorities), the International & American Student Alliance, the Black Student Union, and the National Society of Collegiate Scholars. She enjoys meeting new people from various backgrounds and learning new cultures.
In her spare time, she likes to draw landscape pictures, write short fiction stories, and read books. She plans to graduate in May 2022 and pursue a master’s degree in statistics or data science.