So many things have changed as a student during this pandemic. Life seemed to go from a breakneck speed of classes, clubs, study sessions, and socializing to a slow crawl of Zoom. Instead of bouncing around campus all day, I’ve been spending my quarantine in my small apartment with my roommate. 

I’ve always spent a lot of time studying, but it’s much more solitary now. I average about ten hours a day staring at my computer. I miss the ability to chat with other students in between classes. I miss crash landing at the campus center and spending all day there, occasionally running into classmates. Most of my classes are entirely online. While not ideal, I’ve learned that in-person classes during COVID are a complete headache. One of my discussions was in-person and it is difficult to work in groups while six feet apart in a large lecture hall. I also had a lab class that was not made easier by the on-again-off again quarantines or the fact that we were required to do a similar level of work, but now entirely alone. 

I suppose if there is one silver lining, my classes being recorded is very helpful for the freedom to do things on my own schedule. I know that we have a long way to go before life returns to normal (however much that normal has shifted). I think I can confidently speak for the whole student body when I say that we are all craving a return to normalcy.

Jenna Ridler, Biochemistry, 2021

Student Perspectives are part of a series from the newsletter called “What, exactly, is it like to be a student in a pandemic?”

In any given year, it seems as though the Lutheran Campus Ministry community is becoming something new. As a quarter of our student population leaves and another class is welcomed, life at LCM is always changing. But this year, with all of our activities shifting to a virtual format, our community’s life together changed profoundly. Leaning into the strangeness of these times, we tried some new experiments: a small group especially for first year students, a social media based reflection on the seasons of the church year. At the same time, students continued to experience classes, campus life, and LCM’s Thursday night faith conversations, but in new formats. Here, we have gathered four reflections on an unusual fall semester at Lutheran Campus Ministry. In them you will hear our longing to return to an embodied expression of our community, but you will also find that we have found God’s presence in our virtual experiences.