COVID-19 has changed the lives of every person in this world, more so every college freshman. Every freshman going into college has had to create their ideal dorm or take their classes online.
Not their ideal first semester of college.
I know here at Rider many things have changed. Similar to most school events, almost everything has been held virtually. Welcome week for the freshman was mostly virtual. Most traditional in-person events at Rider have had to be changed in some capacity to help safely protect each student attending.
Through COVID-19, most freshmen have been relying on their friendships they made through the Facebook page for the class of 2024. Most students opted for a single room, so it has been difficult to make new friends on campus. Since most classes will be online,most students will not have the opportunity to meet all of their classmates in person and that is where most people meet their lifelong friends. This is probably the most difficult thing to do on campus now.
Most freshmen have been feeling isolated due to the lack of being able to have a roommate or the fear of having a roommate. Without that other person in that shared space with you, it does get really lonely. Some freshmen were also not on the Facebook page, and because of that, do not have the access to make friends as easily due to the fact that classes are now online.
Freshmen were not able to experience Broncapalooza in person like every other class or event before because of COVID-19. The sign-ups were different to see. Each club or group had a Zoom meeting. I am not sure how many students had attended, but most freshmen probably deemed it not worth attending these Zoom calls because they were not in person and did not get that in person greeting as they wished they would have.
Welcome week was viewed differently this year as well. While the SGA tried to make the most out of these circumstances by trying to have some in person activities, it was just not the same. The in-person activities most people were able to take advantage of and were lots of fun. The yoga was really early in the morning for someone who has been used to waking up so late everyday because of quarantine.
The transition for freshmen has been different but something everyone can get accustomed to. Once spring semester begins, hopefully we will have a smoother transition into our freshman year.
freshman dance education major