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For college students everywhere, March 2020 is a month that will never be forgotten. As we were all adapting to the spring semester and finally getting into the swing of things, suddenly everything we knew came to a halt. 

When the news came out that all colleges would shut down and classes would move online, I felt a ton of emotions that I could not quite grasp. What would this mean for my courses going forward? How would the fall semester look? When will we be able to return to campus?

Well, here we are in September with most courses remaining online and so much uncertainty lying ahead. While some students do have the option to attend classes in-person, life on Rowan’s campus just does not feel the same. Will we ever be able to get back to the way things were before COVID-19?

Attending my classes in a virtual setting has its perks, like being able to stay comfy and not having to commute, but the lack of face-to-face social interaction is something that cannot be replaced.

As a senior who will be graduating in the spring, never did I imagine my time at Rowan being like this. While I cannot speak for other students, I can only imagine that they feel the same way. Not being able to physically be on campus is a sad and strange feeling.

Life as a college student is not supposed to be spent on a computer all day long. In my opinion, lectures should be taught in classrooms. Professors should be able to have conversations with their students face-to-face. As impatient as I am in wanting all these things to happen again, I must remind myself that the safety and well-being of others outweighs my own personal desires.

Walking around Rowan’s campus is not the same as it was seven months ago. Where we would see students walking together as they made their way to class, there are now empty sidewalks. Academic buildings remain quiet and scarcely populated. I cannot help but think that the vision I had of what my time at Rowan would be like has changed completely.

As with everything else in life that now has a new meaning, the college experience has completely changed. At this moment, it is no longer about going to class, hanging out with your friends or attending a game on-campus. All we can do is wait for the day when all classes resume in-person and we can get back to the way things used to be.

I must admit that although virtual learning has its setbacks, there is no other option than to make the best of this new way of life. While we cannot physically see each other, we still can see each other virtually, and that is better than nothing. Even if it is only on our computer screens.

Right now, we can all be together but apart. If all goes well, by next year Rowan’s campus will thrive once again. That is certainly something I hope for every day. Profs have never given up on staying strong and this inspires me to do the same.

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