Hey everyone! I am Ayreana Shephard from Kansas City, MO. I am a sophomore studying Hospitality Leadership.
Were you in college or high school when the pandemic hit the country? What was the biggest impact on your life during the first few months of the pandemic?
I was in my second semester of freshman year when the pandemic hit the country. The biggest impact on my life was moving all of my stuff back home and having all online classes. It was a huge change from sitting next to someone in class listening to lectures to being in my living room and watching lectures from my laptop.
What were the challenges of transitioning from seated classes (either high school or college) to online learning?
Some challenges that I had were having to do everything online with no contact with my peers and professors. I have always emailed my professors when needing help, but I utilized going to their office hours as much as I could to learn certain assignments better and the class itself.
It was hard to stay motivated at times because my computer wasn’t always working until I got a new one, but by the time I did the semester was already over. It was studying at my house sometimes. I learned to manage certain things from being online but it was hard.
What is the greatest lesson you took away from the pandemic (from the beginning to the point we are currently at with social distancing, masking)?
The greatest lesson I took away from the pandemic is life is very short and anything is possible. My grandmother was taken away from us due to COVID, and it was hard. Her health was pretty extraordinary before the pandemic even if she was in her 90s. This taught me that anything could happen to any of us. It made me realize to do what I love and want as soon as I can.
How did you practice Self-Care-As-A-Bear in dealing with the stress of online classes, isolation from friends and activities, general stress of dealing with the unknown?
Stress keeps me motivated to do better. I am constantly busy and sometimes I put so much on my plate that I get overwhelmed and stressed but it makes me perform better and it makes me stronger to take on challenges and everything that needs to get done. Stress doesn’t bother me because I know that everything will be done and I’ll be proud of what I accomplished.
What did you learn about yourself as you went through/continue to go through the pandemic?
I learned about different ways to motivate myself so I don’t get behind or sidetrack. It is very easy to get distracted when classes are online so I learned different ways to stay focused. I learned that I can’t control everything, but to at least manage it.