Not Quite “Back to Normal,” But Something Close


Compared to last year, which was turned upside down by Covid, this upcoming school year at Williston has been almost completely back to normal for the residential students.
Williston students are delighted that their lives on campus are as close to normal as they’ve been since March, 2020. Students and faculty are no longer required to wear facial coverings while outside, only when inside academic buildings. Additionally, residential students are allowed to roam freely throughout their own dorm rooms without any restrictions.
In the 2020 academic year, rules were seemingly endless: facial coverings at nearly all times, prohibition from leaving campus, dividers between tables at the dining hall, and many more. Now, the increasingly relaxed guidelines are fostering a new sense of contentment among the student body.
Anna Zusi, a four-year senior from Deerfield Academy, told The Willistonian her school has taken away all restrictions, leaving them with an residential life experience identical to what was in place before the pandemic struck.
In complete opposition, Amherst College, a small liberal arts college located in Amherst, Mass., implemented incredibly tight restrictions, including the requirement of two facial coverings indoors and the inability to leave campus, according to the Amherst College website.
A five-year senior who wished to remain anonymous is happy with the majority of the restrictions at Williston, as opposed to other academic institutions in the area, although they do wish for a few changes.
“I think that outside people should be allowed in the dorm,” the senior said.
Meryl Sesselberg, a three-year senior from Cape Elizabeth, Maine, is thrilled to be back at school and feels confident about the Covid restrictions this year.
“I feel like we are not on quite as tight of a leash but we are making sure everyone is safe,” she said. Not only has Meryl experienced a highly-restricted year on campus due to Covid, but she is familiar with campus before Covid struck.
Although students are happy to be back on campus, many are still looking forward to a completely “back to normal” residential life experience. Abby Muscato, a two-year sophomore living in Memorial Hall East, notes that masks, while she understands their importance, hinder the academic process.
“I wish we didn’t have to wear masks in the classrooms,” Abby said. “It takes away the ability to communicate with others in the room.”
Throughout the world, there have been nearly five million deaths due to Covid, which began at the end of 2019.