Yes, the pandemic continues

Set Friday is back despite the ongoing pandemic. Photo courtesy: Jazlen Patrick

It’s a new school year with an old pandemic, and everything is reverting to normal except for the pandemic.

With everything opening back up to standard, students are returning to campus with optional masks and six feet of distance not being enforced.

FAMU offered hybrid classes last year, where some courses were online and in-person. The university did this to limit the number of people on campus and to ensure everyone’s health.

But students did not have as much fun and couldn’t socialize as they wanted. For example, FAMU canceled most of  “The Set Friday” events to ensure there was no transmission of COVID-19.

Many students are still adjusting to the transition back to campus, but for sure, students are glad to be back on campus.

Iyanna Peoples, a graduating senior at FAMU from Tallahassee, said that being back on campus is excellent, and there’s nothing like seeing your friends.

“Being back on campus honestly feels great, being this is our second year back in person, and it’s nothing like seeing friends and being able to network with others,” Peoples said. “It doesn’t feel like we’re still in a pandemic because students aren’t wearing masks. Some professors aren’t, but the social distancing concept isn’t even a thing.”

Azana Mason, a graduating senior at FAMU from New York, said it feels good to be back on campus, but the atmosphere is not the same.

“It feels good to be back on campus, but the atmosphere is different,” Mason said. “I don’t know how to explain it. It doesn’t feel like we’re amid a pandemic, but we are. I haven’t completely reverted to normal, but I haven’t taken the necessary precautions to prevent COVID.”

As the campus is returning to normal, students are glad to be back, and some students are not taking the necessary precautions to keep safe.

Shardeia Johnson, a fourth-year business major from Philadelphia, said things are starting to get back to normal.

“Seeing how traditional classes are once again being held on campus, it feels normal to be back,” Johnson said. “Nevertheless, it seems as though a pandemic is still going on. Consequently, I continue to take safety measures, such as mask-wearing and social withdrawal. Since instances continue on the rise and social gatherings and school are in session, it worries me that some people are not using masks. This makes it more prone to becoming sick.”

With the new semester on the way, the hope is to keep infection rates as low as possible throughout the school year as FAMU continues to take necessary precautions, such as placing hand sanitizers in hallways and recommending students to wear masks but not enforcing them,” she said.

Students understandably want to remain safe for themselves and their classmates.