Update: A Semester During COVID-19

Once in a while, during a global pandemic, it is necessary to take a second and reflect. Being a college student is especially unique at this time, and I therefore hope to reflect further on the experience of being a college senior during this unprecedented era. Although things have calmed down at Notre Dame, there is still a feeling of dread and false security in the air.
As I mentioned, the situation at Notre Dame is no longer dire. At the beginning of the semester, we had around 500 cases, and we had to shut down all school events for two weeks. Through improved testing protocols and smarter choices made by students, we brought our numbers down and kept them down. While I could once name at least thirty friends who were positive for COVID-19 at one time, now there are rarely (at least of my friends). It also helps that so many of us have already had it; although I would have never advocated for this in the first place, the antibodies of those who have already had it make it less susceptible for transmission to the rest of us. Additionally, increased random surveillance testing has been a huge help. While this should have been done from the beginning, it is great now.
The false sense of security created by our repression of the virus at our school has led some students to return to their previous risky behaviors. Gatherings are getting larger (both with and without the university’s permission), people are less scared, and students are going back to bars in droves. A decrease in fear in a population is usually a good thing, but in this scenario, a decrease in urgency can increase danger. Although we are not yet seeing increased infection rates from these changes in behavior, that does not mean we are safe.
Despite many of Notre Dame Football’s members being either infected or put into isolation, and a game being canceled because of it, our team is back to playing now. They had a poor showing on Saturday, even though we pulled out the win. Several of my friends who are close to the team members blamed the poor quality of play on the fact that the coaches seriously overworked their players leading up to the game, in order to make up for lost practice time. This can be extremely dangerous physically, and hopefully the team’s performance will discourage the coaches from doing that in the future.
Another way in which Notre Dame let down its students recently was with our president, Father John Jenkins’s, journey to the White House recently. He was pictured in a gathering of far more than 20 people, maskless, congregating and shaking hands with many people. This was viewed as an extreme disappointment by most students, because of how directly it contradicts the standards that he holds his students to. Notre Dame students have been suspended and expelled this semester for disobeying less rules than he did at the White House on that fateful day.
To close off my reflection on the state of things at Notre Dame, I will look towards the future. As more of us are coming down with the common cold and regular sicknesses common to this time of year, we must remember to take extra precautions to keep ourselves healthy. Isolate and wear masks as much as possible, get lots of sleep, and eat healthy food and supplements (check out Source Naturals). Above all, we cannot afford to bring COVID back to our respective communities and families when we leave for Thanksgiving and Christmas. With our families in mind, I say: Go Irish, continue beating COVID!

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.