Alex Bishop, Business

Students find silver lining in their unprecedented COVID summers

It’s a warm July afternoon and you are walking the beach. You feel the sand squish between your toes and hear the sound of the waves brushing against the shore as you walk along the Gulf of Mexico. As you look up to the sky you can see a mix of orange and pink.

That was how PNW junior Alex Bishop spent part of his summer: enjoying the Alabama shore, even while social distancing.

“We had fun fishing in the ocean, boogie boarding, skim-boarding and relaxing on the beach,” said Bishop. “It was nice being able to spend time with family since it’s my first summer living at the dorms.”

Before the pandemic began, Bishop got a job at Briar Ridge Country Club in Schererville. That is when he decided to live on campus last summer. As a member of PNW’s golf team, he felt the job would give him understanding of behind-the-scenes work at a golf course.

“At work, I pick [up] the balls on the range and bring carts around for members,” Bishop said. “I enjoy getting to network and be around golf.”

He found time between work and practice to visit his hometown of Litchfield, Illinois, which is about four hours south of Northwest Indiana and is very different from it.

“When I’m home I go four-wheel riding and fishing,” Bishop said. “Being in the country is different than up here. It’s mainly cornfields [out there].”

He also made sure to spend plenty of time with his family. His brother Brady missed him greatly.

“It [was awful] not having him home,” said Brady. “When he was, I was able to go golfing with him.”

Golf has long been a family activity, which forged Bishop’s deep connection to the sport.

That is why COVID-19 made the summer uniquely difficult.

“It was hard to practice golf,” Bishop said. “Most tournaments were canceled so this was the first summer since middle school I haven’t competed.”