Being a uni student in the time of Coronavirus
Hey everyone, my name is Adam, and I’m a final-year English and French student. This is the first of many blog posts sharing my personal experiences and views on my time at Warwick.
I wanted to start with something that’s very topical at the moment – studying at university with the current pandemic. Having been on a Year Abroad last year, I had only heard of some of the measures that had been put into place – but we’re in the second week of term, and I just wanted to explain/share what things are like at the moment.
Over the summer, the university was working to ensure that we were able to come back to campus at the start of term in October. I’m not going to lie – it’s really weird, but obviously, everything has been done for our safety and for staff safety as well.
Most of my classes are now online, using Microsoft Teams – think Skype, but more fancy – but I do have some face-to-face classes. These are my French Essay and Translation classes, and my French culture seminar (the Left and the Trade Unions in France). When we have face-to-face classes, we have to keep a face mask on at all times, make sure we wipe our desks before and after the class, something which is reflected in the timings – classes now run from five past to ten to (9.05-9.50, for example). Naturally, the rooms are set up to reflect social distancing, but this now means that I have classes in buildings I’ve never really been in, as opposed to usually having most, if not all classes, in the Humanties building – I spent a significant amount of time figuring out where B2.01 is (for anyone who needs to know, it’s in the Chemistry building, just saying)…
This is a basic account of how things are at the moment, academically speaking. And it’s very weird. I’m currently spending more time staring at the four walls of my accommodation than I ever have while being at uni – and I live alone, which sucks. My favourite study space, the TRC in the Humanities building (a study space specifically for language students), is closed, and it’s really difficult to meet friends and lead any kind of social life – especially when everything now closes at 10pm.
Having said this, I have to commend everyone (lecturers and my friends) on how they’re handling the situation. Everyone is being really patient with each other when it comes to using the new technology – I’ve been on many calls where I, or others, have accidentally left themselves on mute! We’re all trying to get used to this new, strange world, and it’s nice to see how understanding everyone is being.
Granted, this was not how I imagined my final year going – I definitely miss going out. However, I thought it was going to be a lot worse when I was getting ready to come back, so it is a comfort to see that it’s not all that bad. Here’s hoping that things eventually improve.
(For more information, you can go to https://warwick.ac.uk/coronavirus/. Stay safe everyone.)