It’s starting to look a bit more normal on college campuses across the state with the return of in-person classes and activities after nearly more than a year of largely virtual learning.
Zoe Bridges, a senior at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, shares how different campus has felt compared to last year.
“I think it’s been a world of difference. Last year felt like a ghost town here,” Bridges said. “All of my classes are full of real-life people, not on Zoom. The streets are super crowded on weekend nights. It’s been a total 180 from last year.”
Cesar Siete, a senior at University of Illinois at Chicago, says some students feel comfortable going into in-person lectures once again, while others miss the ease of Zooming into class from home.
“Recently I’ve seen a lot of posts about students saying that some classes do seem a little packed,” Siete said. “There’s some students that don’t feel comfortable, and others students do miss the luxury of being at home instead of traveling all the way to campus.”
Tomorrow, UIC will host the last in-person day of its Involvement Fair where students can sign up for various organizations.
“The turnout has been way better than past years,” Siete said. “It seems like a lot more people are excited for the Involvement Fair than when I first started. Everyone has been having fun from what I’ve seen and there have been bigger crowds for multiple organizations on campus.”
Both universities are now two weeks into the Fall 2021 semester with some classes still structured as hybrid.
“It’s a little hard to concentrate in class just because you’re used to being in your room during class,” Bridges said. “But overall, it’s been really good for me. Zoom classes were really hard for me like they were for many other people. Getting to be in the classroom with a physical professor, students right next to me learning beside me has been really good.”
Masks are being enforced indoors on both campuses, while COVID-19 saliva testing is required for all individuals, except for those who are fully vaccinated who have disclosed their vaccination status.”