Coronavirus Chaos

On Wednesday, March 13th, the University of Virginia announced that classes will move online starting Thursday, March 19th and encouraged students to return home and evacuate grounds. Since we are still on spring break, this announcement was quite chaotic. I was in the middle of grabbing lunch with friends, which turned into suddenly trying to figure out when I should return to grounds to get my stuff. I was looking forward to returning after spring break and reuniting with my friends, but sadly that was not going to happen. I also contemplated staying in Charlottesville since I lived in an apartment off-grounds, but my parents ultimately decided that I should stay home. 


The ambiguity of this whole situation is discomforting. I am lucky to have the privilege of only driving two hours back to school to pack up my belongings, but my out-of-state friends were left in a much more chaotic situation. They had to immediately book flights, pack as much as they could into suitcases, and abruptly return to their home state. As my roommate and I returned back to our apartment to pick up the rest of our stuff, we noted that all of this felt like a dream. She only had about half a day to pack before she caught the next flight back to Arizona. Everything felt surreal. The indefinite dates and methods of course instruction are unsettling as new questions arise. Will graduation be cancelled? How will labs work online? Do we get reimbursements for meal plans and on-grounds housing? 


The Coronavirus was once a problem that felt half a world away, and now it is increasingly apparent in the United States. With grocery stores wiped out, schools closing nationwide, and several states declaring a state of emergency, the chaos never seems to end. I truly hope that everyone stays safe and healthy during this pandemic, and that things get resolved soon.