This Spring was challenging for students all around the world. Our chapter writers share how they adjusted to the COVID-19 crisis and being confined at home. Although each of us had struggles to overcome, we tried to find the positive in this situation. Many of us found exciting new shows to watch on Netflix, started exercising and working on new skills, and found useful techniques to stay organized while doing schoolwork at home. We hope you’ll enjoy!
“Quarantine has not been easy, but after classes started and I got into a new schedule, I found that I have been able to actually enjoy my time at home. While I miss seeing my friends, Saxby’s coffee runs, and just being at Drexel more than anything, there are a few things that have been helping me get through this stressful and uncertain time. For one, Netflix has truly outdone itself with its releases during Quarantine. I binged all of Outer Banks in a few days, and it was honestly one of the best Netflix original shows I’ve seen in a while. Too Hot To Handle, one of Netflix’s original reality shows, was also a highly entertaining (and cringe-worthy) watch. Another thing that I’m not doing when I’m doing work for online classes is reading fashion/beauty publications and online shopping! Some of my favorite stores to browse currently are I Am Gia, Motel Rocks, and OMighty. Anytime I feel like reading about the newest beauty trends, fashion, or art, I read a few articles from Glossier’s online publication, Into The Gloss, and No Basic Girls Allowed, which is another great female-run publication.” -Bhavna Ganesan
“The beginning of my very first co-op lined up perfectly with the beginning of the stay-at-home order. On Mondays and Wednesdays I’m logged onto my computer doing remote work for the wholesale team over at Marchesa in NYC. Communication happens through email or text, and it’s been a crazy experience but I’m so thankful that they kept me on board! On days that I’m not interning, I’m photographing, listing and selling secondhand clothing on the Poshmark app. I lost my part-time job as a BHLDN bridal stylist due to COVID-19 so the majority of my income is coming from Poshmark. At the beginning of quarantine, I locked myself in my room, turned up my spring Spotify playlist and cleaned out my closet by trying everything on, Carrie Bradshaw style, and making piles to keep, donate and sell. Highly recommended. I even Facetimed a friend a few times to try to convince her that it was reasonable to keep a few things I definitely needed to get rid of! Quarantine has surprisingly been the perfect time to tackle tasks like cleaning that have been sitting on my to-do list for ages.” -Hannah Oh
“My first co-op at Drexel will certainly be a memorable one, thanks to COVID-19. Although it was not the experience I had envisioned for myself, it is definitely an experience that I have already learned a lot from in a short period of time. During finals week of winter term, I was not only stressed out for finals, but I had also been consumed with anxiety about whether or not I would have a co-op to look forward to in the spring. I waited patiently to hear from my employer. Continuing to wait, I realized that most people I knew had experienced cancellation or delaying of their co-op. I decided that I needed to find outlets to distract myself while I waited to hear back from my employer. At first, I chose to binge-watch TV shows that popped up on my TikTok feed. Once I finished Gossip Girl, I realized that one of the things I missed the most was finding time to read. Although my co-op has luckily maneuvered things around to allow me to work online, I have decided to still designate time to reading. I am currently almost done reading the Twilight series to prepare for the new book to come out in August! Although quarantine has affected my mental health, I am trying to have a positive outlook by reflecting on my life and reminding myself of things that bring me happiness.” -Brianna Heidenreich
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“Quarantine has been quite an experience for me. Being in Queens, NYC where we are being hit the hardest, no one has really traveled outside, except for getting groceries. Personally, I have not left my house since coming back from Philly in March. The first week back, I felt like a couch potato and decided that I had to exercise. The number one way that I have gotten exercise is by following the Live Instagram exercises that Rumble Boxing has been uploading! Not only are they free but they’ve helped me gain energy throughout my days when all I do is complete work all day. I highly recommend Julia and Andrew Stern. They are married and both are Rumble Trainers. The tension between the two during workouts a lot of the time brings laughter. Currently, I am taking classes, and it feels as though the professors are loading more work on us. I would like to note that just because we are home and taking online classes doesn’t mean that we have more time on our hands. A tip that I have for online learning is that just because it is online doesn’t mean you shouldn’t listen. I know that these lectures can get boring and you have the urge to scroll through Tik Tok all day, but in the end, it’ll benefit you to listen. An app that I have on my phone to help me stay focused is called Flipd. It can lock you out of your phone for a certain amount of time, or just tracks how long you can stay off for. I am also rewatching one of my favorite series New Girl! I highly recommend it if you need a good belly laugh!” -Leanne Chin
“At first, being quarantined was something that was a challenge to accept and manage. However, as time passed, I began to not only find new hobbies but also found a way to make my new life quarantining similar to my old life. What made it easy was the fact that I never followed a set routine and made it my goal to make every day different. After a few days of sitting in bed, endlessly scrolling, and dreading the weeks that were to follow, I decided that all it did was simply drain me out emotionally. So, a couple of days later, a big package came in and it contained a keyboard. I used to play piano at home and when I first came to Drexel, I realized there was no way to practice, so this quarantine has allowed me to continue to build my skills and keep learning to play new songs. I realized that this quarantine is not only the time to continue old but good habits, but also the best time to develop new ones. I now workout, cook, paint, and take long thoughtful walks. After I call a friend from Drexel or friends and family from back home, I make sure to jump into a new and exciting task or preoccupy myself with homework and assignments, so that I do not drown in a sea of negative thoughts relating to how distant I feel from all of them. It is not always easy or even doable to make every day a productive and eventful day, but over time, I have found new ways to keep myself not only sane but genuinely happy. I make sure to keep a healthy balance of doing new and exciting things and letting myself relax and just be a ‘couch potato’. So, when I feel that I have no energy, I watch shows on Netflix or Hulu (such as Brooklyn Nine-Nine, New Girl, Grey’s Anatomy, The Office and more), sleep in, watch YouTube videos, journal or simply just stay on the phone with a few friends. By maintaining this balance, I have realized that the best way to survive being at home all day, is to prioritize not only your physical wellbeing but your mental health as well.” -Nera Fernando
“I’ve adjusted to quarantine by getting into a routine with my co-op. Since I’m working for Drexel’s fundraising department in the Office of Institutional Advancement, we’ve been really busy trying to organize all of the new donations coming into the department. We’ve been having weekly meetings and happy hours so it’s been easy to stick to a routine that works for every day. I’ve also been doing yoga and catching up on movies with my family and just trying to have faith that quarantine is going to end soon and that everything is going to work out eventually.” -Abby Dickerson
“The first week of being quarantined at home was spent huddled over my desk taking finals and writing papers nonstop, so the quarantine life didn’t hit me yet then. Before classes started back up, I was pretty much playing Animal Crossing on my Nintendo switch all day. That game definitely distracted me from the reality of the situation that we are in. I also discovered that my Tiktok addiction was growing. When classes started again, it felt as though the workload was heavier than ever. It was difficult to stay focused because instead of learning from my classes, it became a weekly chore of turning in assignments before the due date. It was overwhelming, so I recently have been trying a new method of studying. I choose 3 tasks and work on those for 40 minutes at a time. In between those 40 minute intervals, I take a 5-minute break to read a book for fun that I have been wanting to pick for weeks. I really recommend this way of studying because instead of working on one task for hours and ignoring the rest, you get to have an equal distribution of study time for all your classes. And plus you get breaks! All in all, I’ve realized that having patience during quarantine is truly key if we want to get back to our regular lives faster. Make the most out of this time, and remember that one day it will all be over.” -Jana Alrayes
“I can assure you that being quarantined has been an experience of a lifetime. From learning how to be connected with your family to understanding oneself, it is a journey that can help people become self-aware and feel connected to their loved ones. In the first couple of weeks, I was confused and failed to navigate my everyday schedule because attending online classes was hard and I didn’t have the campus vibe around me to focus on my work. After week one, I decided to become more organized and focused on classes by maintaining a physical and digital planner and designating a workplace in the house. This helped me get a feel of a more professional work environment. Quarantine has surprisingly made me more organized and planned as I have started to enroll myself in various online skill courses and certifications. I even started to go for mile-long runs and try new workout routines to feel more active. I feel being busy and on top of your work is essential during quarantine as it helps you with time management, discovering new interests, and spending time with friends and family. On a lighter note, it is important to stay in touch with your high school and college friends through video calls and texts. Staying connected has helped realize the people who care about me and are reaching out to check in which is a great gesture. Overall, quarantine is a time to relax, reconnect, and retrospect to become more self-aware and calm during such times of crisis.” -Shriya Kosuru
“The first few weeks that I was home kind of dragged on, especially after I was done with finals. I did manage to use that time to catch up with my family members, with whom I’m extremely lucky to be stuck in quarantine. I also got back into a lot of activities I hadn’t had too much time for before like painting and baking, which are still huge stress relievers for me, and spent a lot of hours reading, watching Netflix, and FaceTiming my friends. When my spring term started, I realized that I’d been taking all that free time for granted. Since then, I’ve had to force myself to stop sleeping in until 11 and started scheduling every week around classwork, homework, virtual club meetings, and my first ever co-op round. The first few weeks were pretty rough, especially when it came to my sleep schedule and mental health, and it definitely took me a while to adjust. At some point, I realized that I was watching Netflix on the same laptop and in the same room where I do my homework, so I never really felt like I had a break from work even when I wasn’t working. I decided to start setting aside more hours to myself and making sure there was a distinction between my workspace and relaxation space. I go on a lot of walks with my dog, make sure to FaceTime someone at least once a week, and have lots of long family dinners and movie nights when I have the time. I’ve even set up a studio space in my garage to take virtual dance classes, one of which involves choreographing a performance through Zoom. Overall, I’m trying to take advantage of this period of isolation to work on my physical and mental health, be as productive as possible, try out some new creative projects, and be optimistic about the future.” -Anna Gordover
“For me, it wasn’t very difficult to adjust to not being able to leave the house. I guess this really proves that I’m an introvert! Nevertheless, this period was full of stress and uncertainty. It all started when my plans of seeing my mom during Spring break fell through as Trump ordered a travel ban from Europe in March. We had long planned to visit LA together and she was going to fly there from Latvia. The situation changed very quickly and I decided that the best idea for me would be to spend the time with my relatives in South Jersey. When I left my Philly apartment, I thought I was only leaving for a few weeks (so I barely have any clothing for this summer), which looks like is going to be 6 months at least… I am so grateful I was able to spend my time in lockdown with relatives in a house with a backyard and I wasn’t stuck indoors, alone. I also started running and doing yoga regularly, which really helped me mentally. However, this time was hard because due to all the travel bans and the extremely tragic situation with the spread of the virus, I didn’t know when I will see my mother and boyfriend. Fortunately, the Latvian government announced new repatriation flights from a few biggest airports in Europe and I was able to purchase a ticket for May 6 and find a connection from Newark. I was so happy! It was a surreal experience flying transatlantic in an empty plane and spending 8 hours in an empty Frankfurt airport but overall I felt safe throughout the trip. Seeing my mom and dog was definitely a silver lining to this whole situation, which I am so grateful for! It was challenging to adapt to learning at night, my classes as late as 1 – 4 am due to the 7 hour time difference with the East Coast; however, I made it through!” -Alise Pundure
Each of us has had a different experience during lockdown but many of us have learned new things about ourselves and reflected on what is important and truly makes us happy. However challenging your time in quarantine has been, we really hope that you have also gained a new skill, a better understanding of yourself, or just some time to clean your room! Let’s all stay positive and safely meet on campus in Fall!