Just when we thought life was getting back to what we once considered “normal”, the new COVID-19 variants have changed it all.
You may be wondering what this new variants of COVID-19 are and why they raise so much concern? COVID-19 is a complex virus, because of that it constantly changes. These changes are called mutations that ultimately can result in new variants of the same virus.
There have been vaccines and boosters created to further our safety against the COVID-19 variants. Being vaccinated does not guarantee immunity from the virus, it introduces and strengthens the proper antibodies to fight off the virus.
Different Colleges/Universities have put several safety precautions in place to ensure a safe return to campus for their students. Tyjira Reid, a sophomore at DSU, shares her concerns regarding the new variants and her return to campus this semester. Her main concerns relate with classes returning to virtual, “I do not work well in a remote learning setting. Teachers move fast when teaching online vs in person where there is more engagement.”
DSU implemented several safety precautions including weekly COVID testing for all students. The University received little to no push back regarding weekly testing from staff and students, Tyjira agreed “It is the right thing to do, we have more people on campus this semester and our safety is top priority.”
DSU is one of many colleges/universities that have struggled with the threat of COVID-19 affecting their students. Malaya Keene, a student at Purchase College, located in New York, shared similar concerns. Malaya said “Living on campus was definitely a big concern…Overall just being in small shared spaces such as classrooms with others, was a little unnerving considering the quickness in which the new variant spread.”
According to Malaya, her school, Purchase College, adopted some new COVID-19 protocols as well. As of right now Purchase College has a mask mandate in place for all inside locations except dorm rooms. Also, all students must be vaccinated and if eligible for the booster shot, retain that as well. She shares how COVID has affected her college experience, “There is a lack of overall community, certain events that once were, no longer exist due to the threat of COVID-19.”
Not only has COVID-19 affected the everyday lives of college students, but more severely college athletes. Basketball player Sam Johnson, who attends High Point University, located in North Carolina shares his opinion. He said “I was not worried about my return to school initially. That changed when my roommate caught COVID and my health was at risk. I started to think about my team and the safety of my University.”
Sam believes that his school, High Point University, did a great job with having COVID protocols in place for their safety. He shares his experience with how such protocols affect him and his team. “Athletes are required to wear a mask during some of their games, which can make things very difficult.”
High Point Univeristy Basketball Arena
COVID-19 has changed our way of living drastically, but more importantly the experiences of college students. We are transitioning into a new way of living, and that includes being mindful of our safety and the safety of others.