We’re All Tired of Covid — And That’s a Privilege


With increasing positive cases on campus, students’ views on Covid have changed since the pandemic started more than two years ago; many students admit they are “tired of it.”
Coming back from the winter break, Williston went online for one week to ensure classes could be offered under safe conditions. This, of course, brought students back to last year, when Williston held hybrid classes both online and offline, and was a stark reminder that the pandemic never left. In fact, as of Jan. 3, the U.S. reported 1,017,376 new cases, peaking at an all-time high.
All current Williston students have spent the past two years, crucial to shaping their identity, impacted by Covid. On top of accepting and living with new social norms, students’ perception of the virus and the future are also changing.
The term “Generation Covid,” according to CNN, first appeared on social media at the beginning of the pandemic. In 2021, researchers started to look behind the term, focusing on the impact of Covid on the younger generation. CNN reported that scientists’ definition of “Gen C” includes people from six to college aged.
Soleil Richardson, a sophomore from Bermuda, believed that when Covid first hit, most of the students did not realize the seriousness of it.
“I think we all thought ‘oh two-week break from school! Awesome!” she said.
She added that nobody knew what was in store. Her perception of the situation grew more serious as Covid spread.
“As the pandemic grew,” she said, “I grew to understand the complexity of the virus, [that] this wasn’t going to be over after one week.”
Now, more than two years later, Soleil is focused on keeping positive about the situation. “Now I am where I am,” she said. “I really want to say it will get better. However, I’m not sure [if] that’s entirely true.”
“Not that I don’t think it will ever die down,” she added. “But rather there is a new normal we will all have to adjust to.”
Soleil, like many, still feels scared by the virus’ spread.
“I, myself, have lost family members to Covid, so I have never once doubted the severity of the virus,” she said.
While she can “understand that people are tired of Covid,” Soleil said people also have to “recognize that there is a certain privilege that comes with that.”
Soleil thinks Covid has left a profound impact on people that is hard to process.
“I think we all have permanent scars from the pandemic,” she said. “We are all going to have a harder time making connections, reaching out to people, etc. But I think eventually everyone will get used to the ‘new normal.’”
At the beginning of the pandemic, Shirley Shi, a junior from Beijing, entertained the idea that Covid might have no impact on her.
“To be honest, at first, I thought Covid was far from me,” she said. “And I was not the best at following safety precautions.”
However, many of the people she knows tested positive for Covid during winter break, which changed her mind.
“I never thought that Covid [was] so close to us,” she said. “Right now, I am doing everything I [can] to stay healthy.”
Katy Guo, a sophomore from Beijing, first expected that “the pandemic was going to end pretty soon.” She didn’t envision it spreading across the globe.
However, she does feel hopeful, as more people who tested positive have had mild to no symptoms.
Katy tested positive during winter break, which was unexpected, she said, because she had mostly been isolated. She does not feel panicked or stressed; instead, she is focused on staying healthy. She does feel that there is a lot of stigma surrounding people who have gotten Covid.
Liz Gluz, a junior from Syracuse, N.Y., feels Covid is going to have a profound impact on her generation’s future.
“At first, I thought Covid would end fairly quickly, and it would just be a story that I would tell to people in the years to come,” she said. “But now, I see that it is obviously going to take a lot longer, and it’s going to impact our lives for a long time, especially our education.”
Liz’s perception of Covid changed when people around her started to test positive.
“I do not feel scared for myself. Personally, I am triple vaxxed,” she said. “But recently, coming back from break, it is the first time during the multiple-year-long pandemic that people in school I know have gotten Covid.”
“Thank goodness they are ok,” she continued. “It does not hit that much until it affects you or someone near you.”