Guide for Students
We’re returning to campus this fall, but, given all that we’ll be bringing with us from the pandemic experience, this semester won’t be business as usual. We’ll need to approach our courses with deliberate attention to lessons learned over the last year and a half and particular sensitivity to our well-being and the well-being of others. We’ve gathered resources here to help you get ready, and we’ve grouped them to make it easier to navigate to what you need.
- First, we’ve shared a list of considerations below that may help orient you as we all transition together.
- Second, we’ve outlined new protocols that you’ll be putting into practice in your learning.
- A third section explores particular support for first-year students.
- Fourth, we’ve outlined ideas for how to approach hybrid courses.
- Fifth, we’ve gathered additional resources to help support a wide range of needs you might have.
Here are some major concepts to keep in mind as we return to teaching and learning anew this fall.
Take stock of what really matters after an incredibly difficult year. This exercise may help you make choices about everything from your courses, your schedule, and personal life that may help you flourish in the long run.
Keep your expectations reasonable. This applies to expectations for the on-campus experience and for your own performance. Both will probably be somewhat different than whatever you’re used to thinking of as “normal,” and having excessively demanding expectations will make things harder.
Connect with campus resources. You may have felt disconnected from campus for quite a chunk of your time in college, but there are many resources available to help support you. See below for more.
Help and support one another. We’ve all been through something enormous. Self-care is going to be particularly important this year, and so is care for others. In particular, mental health should be a primary concern. After events of this magnitude, it’s important to watch out for signs of depression, anxiety, disordered eating, and other struggles—and to get the support that’s needed.
Remember that we all need different things. The past year and a half has affected different people differently, and the return to campus will not be the same for everyone. Leave room for your own individual experience, and for the individual experiences of others.
Don’t let your pandemic experience define your choices. Try not to fixate on “time lost” during the pandemic; focusing on the present is the best way to have a great semester. And it’s a good idea to ease back into social life rather than throwing yourself into risky or uncertain situations just to make up for that “lost time.”
Make good use of office hours. For some tips, see this guide from the Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Working Group of the Biology Department.
If you have a concern or see a trend to address, you may reach out to Daniela Brancaforte, the Main Campus Student Ombuds at Georgetown University. An ombudsperson is someone who can hear concerns, help process them, and make sure those concerns reach the right audience and become actionable.