The dark cloud hanging over the hill: COVID’s impact on FAMU’s campus

FAMU’s Campus life faces obscurity during COVID-19 Pandemic. Photo courtesy: Scott

Since 2019, COVID-19 has been looming over the entire world. It has caused lockdowns, closings of businesses and separation of families for over the past three years.

But on the highest of seven hills, this pandemic has taken away a lot that makes Florida A&M University what it is known for.

In August, we were told by the university that on the 27th we would have our last Set Friday. Two months later, we would have our very first “Set Friday” at the Will Packer Amphitheater. An article in the Famuan would show that while some students were pleased with the location change, others were not. This location change and Set Friday’s still not becoming a weekly event again played a big role in FAMU’s campus life from then on.

Set Friday has been one of the ongoing traditions on FAMU’s campus since its inception. To have that taken away, not only from the upperclassmen, but from the freshmen and sophomores who haven’t been able to experience anything since arriving on campus, was definitely a mood killer.

Another thing that definitely took a hit was something people far and wide travel to FAMU for: homecoming. Now, while there was a good turnout for all the events as well as the big game, FAMU suffered many consequences afterwards.

According to an article in WTXL, both FSU and FAMU saw 25 to 50 flu cases a day following both universities’ homecoming weeks. That week on the campus looked like a ghost town as people were either at home sick with the flu or a cold, or even just COVID-19. The influx in flu cases took a heavy toll on class attendance and most on campus events looked empty as well.

Personally, catching a cold after going to one party during homecoming week was not how I expected my year to start. After four excruciating days with a sore throat and a slight fever, I didn’t go out after that because I was scared it would get worse than a cold.

Lastly, COVID-19 definitely impacted the mental health of many college students. More college students are choosing to stay inside and keep to themselves after a year of isolation. According to an article from Boston College, adults aged 18-29 were more impacted when it comes to mental health during the pandemic.

Students, especially I, would now prefer to stay inside, binge-watch shows and stuff their faces to their hearts content rather than attend events, which is definitely impacting the current campus life of FAMU.