Student Snippets A Window Into The Daily Life & Thoughts of SLIS Students

Uncertain Times

It’s now April and things are still….not great. 

When I wrote my last post in mid-March, while many people were working from home, I was still going in to work.  However, by the end of that week, I was working from home, and since that post, all non-essential businesses have closed their physical spaces until May 4.   Simmons had made the decision to transition to online learning when I wrote my last post, and that has been going on since March 23.  That decision didn’t actually affect me too much as I was already in an online class.  New changes are happening every day and I’ve basically not left my home since my last day “at work.”

COVID-19 has really thrown this semester, and future planning, for a bit of a loop.  I’m taking LIS 453: Collection Development this semester, and as I mentioned, it was already an online class, so I didn’t really have too much of a transition, but the virus has definitely messed with my sense of structure, time management, and overall sense of normalcy.  Did you know that we only have three-and-a-half weeks left in the semester?  Because of everything that happened in March, I didn’t do my usual “Countdown to the End of the Semester” that I typically do, and then the end of the semester snuck up on me!  Between now and the end of the semester, here’s what I have left: my Budget Assignment, my Usage Statistics Assignment, and the ongoing Social Media Assignment.  That’s it!  

In regards to future planning, because of COVID-19, all of the SLIS classes are going to be online for Summer 2020, which is a really smart thing to do given the circumstances.  Normally, this would not affect me at all, because I usually take online classes.  Well, in a bout of extremely wishful thinking, I signed up for an in-person class for Summer 2020.  A large part of the reason why I signed up for it was due to scheduling–the class only met for six days and I finally thought (again, wishful thinking) I had an in-person class that was going to work out with my life and work and everything; however, the class now is meeting the whole summer and has transitioned to an online course, and now I need to figure out how this is going to work with me, my work, the pandemic, and if it is still feasible for me to take that particular class.  Because of COVID-19, I now have no idea what the next few months of my life are going to look like, which is making future planning extremely difficult.  Also, Fall 2020 registration is going to be coming up sometime in the next few weeks.  Where will we be in September?  I usually go for online classes, as they tend to work better for my lifestyle, and I think even if I find an in-person class that works with my “usual” schedule and course planning, I should still go for online, just in case. 

I recognize that I am extremely privileged to be in the position where I still have a job, have the ability to work remotely, and that I didn’t really have to deal with a transition to online learning with my class.  I am extremely fortunate.  That being said, I feel this mixture of stress, anxiety, uncertainty, fear, anger, and weirdly boredom.  I fall into the high-risk category for COVID-19, so I’m terrified of what will happen if I get it, the news doesn’t really help, and it’s really easy to get stuck in a spiral of what-ifs.  Some days feel endless, and some days go by in the blink of an eye–it feels like the days are blurring together.  The two things that are really keeping me on track are due dates and deadlines for my class, and the times I need to be online for work–if I didn’t have that, time would feel like it has no meaning.  I don’t know what is going to happen in the coming weeks–I don’t think anyone does– and the uncertainty is frightening.  The best and most important thing we can do is follow guidelines set out by the WHO, CDC, the state, and public health officials, and do our best to help flatten the curve by social distancing as much as possible, depending on your situation. 

We live in uncertain times but we’ll get through this together, one step at a time!