Photo by Thomas Lal

Living on Campus during a Pandemic

Humboldt State University reopens campus and student housing for new incoming students.
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Humboldt State University reopens campus and student housing for new incoming students.

Universities across the nation are experiencing a drop in enrollment this year due to COVID-19 and Humboldt State University is no exception. With around a thousand new students moved into single-occupancy rooms on Aug. 17, HSU remains determined on reopening campus and providing student housing for the fall semester.

Among those returning is second year HSU student, Bryce Hunt. Hunt lived on campus prior to in-person instruction ending and he knew he would be returning to campus.

“I had already made my decision internally,” Hunt said. “I knew a majority of my friends were coming back up and I needed to get out of my home and my hometown.”

For Hunt, the adjustment to life on campus during the pandemic has been fairly easy. While he admits the absence of resources such as in-person advising has been a hindrance, he feels the school is taking strong protective measures.

“I like that they’re offering free coronavirus testing,” Hunt said. “They’ve been open about the fact that they have had cases.”

Hunt feels that campus is safe as long as everyone takes proper precautions and follows the advised county health guidelines.

“Even with everything going on, I want to be here, because I’m happy here.”

Adrian Black

“I feel fairly comfortable,” Hunt said. “I know I’m taking the protective measures so I can to be safe. I don’t think it’s bothering me as much as it did after spring break.”

Adrian Black, a second year student at HSU, is staying off-campus but remaining in Humboldt. Without any in-person classes, Black made their decision partially out of want, and partially out of need.

“I don’t really have any other place to live,” Black said. “My parents don’t have room for me. Besides, I really like living here. Even with everything going on, I want to be here, because I’m happy here.”

While they had previously considered not returning to HSU after last semester’s disorganized attempt at online classes, Black decided to give this semester a try. Driven by both a passion for learning and a fundamental hunger for something to do, Black returned. However, they’re disappointed in the lack of resources and social-outlets available to students.

“A lot of the charm of being a student is being on campus, interacting with students and faculty,” Black said. “I feel like clubs and such are going to be lacking since we can’t do in-person meetings. It limits what types of clubs are allowed and accessible and puts a damper on social lives.”

With students and faculty better prepared for online classes, new precautions in place and the world adjusting to a new reality, they believe that it can be a good semester.

“I have high hopes, and I hope that by next year, things will have gotten better,” Black said.

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