home Memoir When Everything Changes

When Everything Changes

By Gabriela Martins ’21 (Business)

In a timespan of just two weeks everything happened so fast! I was supposed to travel with my roommate for spring break, and the day of our travels was the same day that Governor Cuomo announced that the semester would go online. It was also the same day that President Trump imposed a ban from European flights (we were going to the Netherlands). Since then something major would happen everyday, and the anxiety of not being home and not knowing if I would even be able to go there was the worst part.

I stayed in New Paltz for the first week of the spring break with one of my friends (since everyone else left). It was peaceful, but at the same time I could not relax. I knew that the College was trying its best and that international students were looked after, but I feared not being able to go back home to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.  I also feared getting a disease in another country, and having to be a burden to my family as it might be costly for me to stay if I was not allowed to travel back home. With all of that going on, I was focused on getting myself a flight and packing up what was my home for almost three semesters.

It was a shame to know I would not see my professors and peers in person anymore, but I understood that it was necessary. Professors were very understanding of my situation as an international student and asked many times if all was good and if I needed any help. It made me feel warm, and this is something very important during this troubled time we are going through.

There have been a lot of challenges with remote learning, but gladly I’ve also have had triumphs overcoming them. Most of my classes have included group projects, and now that I am about to submit some of them I appreciate how we were able to do the best we could and feel proud.

I definitely miss the College. I loved how busy campus could get and running into my friends all day long. Also, I really miss my suite and suitemates. We were all very close and had great times. I miss them very much.