The ending

As the semester comes to a close, I can’t help but feel a sense of excitement and relief. Thanksgiving break is approaching, which means I get to go home for a little while to see my family and enjoy home-cooked meals. At the same time, I am relieved thinking about the fact that winter break is within reach. So far, I feel like I have achieved so much, and I am very proud of myself. Between being more social and trying to be involved on campus wherever I can, I’ve reached many personal goals I set in place for myself. During the past few months, I’ve been focused on maintaining my physical, emotional, and mental wellness while juggling coursework, and I can say that it’s been going well. I’ve learned the importance of taking care of my body and mind, which has helped me progress this semester.

As far as classes go, everything has been running smoothly. I have been paying attention to which classes I need to improve in and actively have been going to office hours or study sessions to get the help I need. Compared to last semester, my time-management skills have improved, making it easier to do work and study for each class which has helped my grades tremendously. Although we only have a few more weeks left of school, preparing for finals week can be stressful. Having to complete extensive assignments and study for final exams will be a challenge, but not impossible. I’m glad that we’re in the final stretch, I’m looking forward to ending the semester and the year in good academic standing.

The middle

As we approach the middle of the semester, I have to say it’s been going moderately fast. In regards to school, we seem to have been doing well on keeping the spread of Covid-19 to a minimum, which also means reduced restrictions! Since the beginning of this semester nothing seems to have changed in a bad way. Personally, I have found that I can connect with so many more students on campus with whom I have formed a bond. It has allowed me to be more social, get out of my room, distract myself from work, and instead surround myself with friends and fun. Classes have also been going well for me; I don’t feel as overwhelmed as I did last semester mostly because in-person learning is more accessible for me. As for all of us (I would assume), the hardest part is getting up in the mornings, especially as the weather gets colder and the further we get into the semester, but we are halfway there, which keeps me going.

By the end of this semester, I hope that our school-wide covid cases will remain low so that we can go back to being somewhat normal. I’m looking forward to sitting on the bleachers and watching football games or any school-wide events that we never got to experience because of Covid-19. In terms of classes, I can speak for us all when I say that I hope to complete this semester with all passing grades and exceptional cumulative G.P.A. So far, I have been doing a remarkable job at managing my time to ensure that I complete my work in a timely manner while also making room for leisure activity and self-care, which is very important as a college student. Most importantly, by the end of the semester, I can’t wait to destress, relax, and prepare for the Spring.

The prologue

My name is Paris Pinkney, and I am now a sophomore here at SUNY Geneseo. I am a sociomedical science major, which is relatively new, and I have enjoyed my time here so far. The fall 2020 semester was my first college semester which I was so excited for, but due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the world was pretty much upside down. The pandemic had a major impact on me and my peers’ first-year college experience. I wasn’t as social as I wanted to be because of the school’s restrictions and protocols. I also didn’t go outside much because I had no in-person classes so I spent most of my time in my dorm. Unfortunately, my roommate wasn’t the best which, made me want to leave my dorm most of the time, but I had nowhere to go and not many friends. I utilized some of Geneseo’s peer mentoring and counseling services to help me mentally and get me through my first year which helped.

Being a first-year student and taking all of my classes online was difficult in its entirety. I was forced to meet all of my professors online which wasn’t really ideal, but we had to make it work. I found it harder to grasp most information no matter which way it was worded. At first, I liked the online idea because I could do most of my work on my own time without having to wake up early. I quickly realized that the negative aspects outweighed the positives because it was harder for me to understand, and at a certain point, I genuinely wanted to be in class. However, not everything was negative about my first year, I met some of my closest friends that now make Geneseo feel like home. Currently, classes are going pretty well for me and they’re more manageable. Now that we have the opportunity to be in-person, I am in a much better head space and it’s a bit easier. The school has also lifted some of the protocols which makes things seem a little more normal. So far it has been a great start to the semester.