Students deal with social distancing

Between keeping up with Blackboard posts, Zoom conferences and being cooped up in self-quarantine, some PNW students are slowly going stir crazy.

With shops, restaurants and bars closed, PNW students are finding their routine totally disrupted.

“I feel trapped and not being able to go outside makes it very tough for me to stay motivated when it comes to school and just overall daily activities,” said junior Lonzhane’ Coleman. 

“It is beginning to get stressful to sit at my computer for multiple hours a day,” said sophomore Tom Lozano. “I’ve adapted to the quarantine, but am hoping it’s over soon.”

While many students have a case of cabin fever and too much spare time, other students are mentally and physically struggling to cope with the time being stuck indoors.

“I feel like I am getting a little more uneasy every day,” said senior Maeve Leahy. “I’m starting to get a little stir-crazy, and every day feels just like the last. Physically I feel exhausted for no reason at all, so I started working out, hoping that will make me feel better about being so tired all day.”

Senior Carolina Meraz understands.

“This quarantine was definitely hard to adjust to in the beginning,” she said. “Although I am an introvert, I enjoy being outside of my house, typically to do all of my schoolwork at Starbucks or on campus, but that isn’t an option anymore, so it’s been very difficult to focus at home.”

“Unfortunately, I had two mini panic attacks in the first two weeks,” said Meraz. “I had major anxiety, especially not being able to see my therapist.”

With these overwhelming feelings of uncertainty during these unprecedented times, the Counseling Center at PNW has moved to an online platform.

The PNW Counseling Center will send weekly emails discussing topics of interest and resources to assist students, faculty and staff. It will also include recommendations of apps and podcasts that can be helpful in coping with the anxiety of COVID-19.

Any enrolled PNW students can contact the Counseling Center at 219-989-2366 to schedule a confidential and free personal counseling appointment.

Students have already faced the transition of campus classes to a remote, e-learning space. Now, students are trying to figure out how to manage self-quarantining after a nationwide recommendation to practice social distancing.

But some students are struggling to find ways to cope.

“I volunteer to run errands a lot more now, so I take care of any grocery or pharmacy needs for the house as an excuse to get out of the house,” said Meraz. “Some days I’ll just go for a drive with no destination.”

Other students try to stay busy in other ways.

“My parents and I have been out of work, and my little brother no longer can go to school physically, so he’s learning through e-learning,” said Coleman. “With the time I have now, I use that to help my little brother with his homework.”