Cherish your last semester as an Illini

Two+college+students+make+the+most+of+quarantine+by+tossing+a+basketball+back+and+forth+through+open+windows+on+April+18%2C+2020+in+Susquehanna%2C+Pennsylvania.+

Photo Courtesy of Sean Simmers via TNS

Two college students make the most of quarantine by tossing a basketball back and forth through open windows on April 18, 2020 in Susquehanna, Pennsylvania.

By Sonal Singh, Staff Writer

Within the past month, so many things have happened. We’ve all been forced to evolve and come up with new ways to continue our education while trying our best to stay safe.

Although online instruction is one of the best solutions, it takes away a big part of our college experience, such as spending time with friends, exploring new parts of Chambana and even studying at your favorite cafe. I’m sure these are things all of us miss, especially seniors who will likely not return to campus for the foreseeable future. Below is some advice for seniors who have been having a hard time making the most of their last semester.

The first, most important piece of advice is to keep in touch with your friends. There is a stark contrast between living at home and living on campus among your friends. Staying in touch with them is more important now than ever, and the wonderful thing is there are so many ways to do this.

It could through be a lengthy zoom group call every weekend or a quick check-in every few days. You can also try to make new plans, such as watching a new show together or reading the same book simultaneously. Having something in common is one of the easiest ways to make sure you keep in touch.

Next, try to keep your routine as similar as possible. Do things as you normally would (as much as you can)For example, do you normally watch a TV show with your friends every Thursday? Do you have game nights every Saturday? Try incorporating these into your life now. Continue doing things the same way you would if we continued in-person instruction. This will give you a sense of normalcy. 

For those staying on campus, avoid meeting people in-person as much as you can. But that doesn’t mean you should shy away from the occasional walk, as well as the chance to explore parts of the campus you never had the time to see. Enjoy campus as much as you can (while you stay safe!).

Additionally, take the time to reflect on your university experience and your past four years. Think about how you’ve grown as a person. It’s okay to allow yourself to feel disappointed your final semester didn’t go the way you planned. Try creating a list of everything you wanted to do before you graduate and try to accomplish those things as best as possible given your means.

Finally, job prospects are something everybody is worried about right now. The best way to satiate any worry would be to reach out and talk to your employer to discuss how they’re handling the situation. If your offer gets rescinded, make sure you check with your employer if the decision is permanent and ask if they could delay your start date instead.

In the event that things don’t work out, devote any extra time you may have to gaining fun, relevant skills. Spend time learning new skills which are relevant in the market and make sure it’s something you will enjoy too. This is a great way to pass any extra time you may or may not have.

These are some ways seniors and anyone can use to make the most of their semester until in-person instruction resumes.

Sonal is a sophomore in business

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