Image courtesy of Catholic University
By Franchetta Groves
With online classes and quarantine, all students are facing new challenges this semester. All students were hurt by the fact that they have been unable to return back to campus and experience all that college life and the District of Columbia has to offer.
Many of the current sophomore students have voiced their complaints about not being able to have a full year on campus and having missed out on finding and meeting their core group of friends. Catholic’s Center of Campus Activities has been sympathetic to these concerns and has proposed a possible solution: virtual meetups by regions.
In early September, the director of campus activities, Steve Kreider, emailed the class of 2023 about the unique opportunity to virtually meet students from Catholic University who live in the same area as their hometown. The hope being that students would be able to meet more of those in their class, specifically those in the same area. Some students have reacted with excitement about this possibility and have plans to attend these virtual sessions and even host them.
“Honestly I thought this was a really good idea to try and offer a little bit of the campus community to the sophomores,” said sophomore Bridget Guinee, who is hosting the western Pennsylvania/eastern Ohio session. “As orientation advisor I know we were all really focused on making sure the freshman still formed a sense of community both over Zoom and six feet apart, but the sophomores didn’t fully get to experience and form that community because our second semester was cut short.”
Other students are appreciative of the effort the university is attempting to make to form a sense of community, however, they find it to be a difficult task.
“It just feels like we’re going through freshman orientation again,” commented sophomore engineering major Emily Moriarty. “I think it’s a good idea but it just feels like it isn’t necessary.”
Guinee also expressed sentiments that this is not necessarily the situation everyone wishes it could be.
“This isn’t obviously the most ideal way but I think it demonstrates that our class wasn’t forgotten by the university. If people show up to the meetings, I think they could be really fun and a great way to stay both connected and to our friends and meet new ones from nearby hometowns,” Guinee said.
The Zoom calls will begin next week and will be hosted by students. If students are interested in attending these meetings they can check their emails for the links to attend these Zoom calls. While many students expressed gratitude for the option to attend these meetings some are not sure that they feel a need to attend.
“I don’t really feel that I need to attend,” stated sophomore Kate Lozzi. “But my overall thoughts on it are that I think it’s a helpful way for people to meet up!”
During these challenging times, many students are trying to adjust to being online all day for classes. Looking at a computer screen all day for classes and homework can be draining and tiring. To then log into another Zoom call and meet new individuals can seem to be too tiring and even overwhelming for some. Providing students with this opportunity shows that Catholic University is trying to do what it can to give students the tools to overcome the challenges of this pandemic, and it may help some students regain some sense of normalcy. However, nothing will be the same as experiencing campus life in person, where Zoom meetings will be a thing of the past.