Masked up at Roosevelt University

by Raneen El-Barbarawi / Staff Reporter

Damien Breitspecher pictured entering Roosevelt University through the Michigan
entrance with a mask on. Photo by Raneen El-Barbarawi.

Life at Roosevelt has had many adjustments due to COVID-19, and the shift to a virtual Zoom life. Some students have expressed their concerns with how Roosevelt has been handling things, while others even offered ways to improve their living standards at Wabash.

Kamaria Grayson, a sophomore marketing major living on the 22nd floor, said, “I think with living on campus this year, there are pros and cons; the pros being since we’re all stuck here, it’s made it easier to make friends in a way and the cons would be the cafeteria being disgusting.” 

“It’s like they raised the meal plan prices and lowered the quality of food,” Grayson said.

Juleana Gallizo, a sophomore majoring in psychology living on the 24th floor, also felt the same way.

“I definitely feel slightly disappointed because they didn’t inform us of everything that was going down this year like the guest policy, the closed gym and how they changed our meal plan. This is annoying because it’s more expensive and we’re not even getting quality stuff,” Gallizo said, adding that all her classes are online this semester.

“I would also say that communicating about things going on in the dorms has lacked because I didn’t even know they changed the suite number rule where you can only have six people in the suite. Also, they told everyone that we couldn’t have guests anymore after everyone already moved in, so it was like, ‘I’m stuck now,’” Grayson added.

“I wish we could have a guest policy where we could at least have one guest. I think we should be allowed a guest if we’re staying around them at all times and making sure they wear their masks,” said Damien Breitspecher, a sophomore psychology major living on the 31st floor.

Roosevelt is now requiring students to fill out a “self-assessment” before leaving and entering the school which asks questions that relate to COVID-19. These yes or no questions consist of asking students if they have any COVID-like symptoms, if they’ve traveled within the past 14 days and also requires students to agree to specific terms so that they can enter back into the school. If they pass, they are then given a green arrow and are able to enter back into the school. If they fail, they then may face having to stay in the quarantine rooms in the Wabash building or not being able to enter the building at all. 

“The self-assessment thing is stupid because we have to show it when we go down from our room to the 14th floor and everyone isn’t on the same page,” said Gallizo.

“The only thing that’s dumb is having to show the assessment when I leave my room, because I haven’t gone anywhere so there’s literally nothing I could’ve caught,” said Grayson.

Gallizo and Grayson then explained how they felt about how Roosevelt has been handing COVID-19. 

“I think they’re being very precautious and taking the right measures for COVID, like getting the students tested. I think it was cool to partner up with the clinic because a lot of big schools aren’t doing that, and they have tons of cases. I think they’re really on their s*** and I respect them for it,” said Gallizo. 

“I feel like it’s fine. It’s just an adjustment you have to take, but it’s not as bad as what it would seem like on paper or what we were being told in the summer,” said Breitspecher, adding that he has an in-person laboratory class every other week.

“I feel like Roosevelt is doing a good job in maintaining and making sure we have no COVID cases. A lot of my friends have COVID cases at their schools, but we virtually have none,” said Grayson.

Students then spoke on their feelings towards having to transition to online classes.

“Roosevelt isn’t taking into consideration how hard e-learning is and a lot of the professors are just hounding us with work since it’s all online. It’s just too much work; we weren’t doing this much work in person,” said Grayson. She added that she did have an in-person class but decided to stop because she felt like it was too unorganized.

“I think that online school has become about passing. Nobody even cares to learn anymore because we’re sitting in front of a computer screen every day,” she added.

“I don’t like it because I don’t feel like I learn efficiently over zoom and I feel like I’m just doing stuff to get it done,” said Gallizo.

“If Roosevelt tried to do it where some classes are in-person, then that would be great. Some teachers can’t teach online and if we had in-person classes, then more people would start showing up,” Grayson suggested.

“I think they should consider having every class at least meet once a week, especially if they’re small. I wish they would try to do more in-person things, even if it were once a week,” said Gallizo.

They then spoke on some added changes they would also hope to see in the future.

“I would like for Roosevelt to start communicating better with anything going on, whether it’s COVID or policy-wise. I’d also like them to start listening to the students about how we feel about e-learning and what’s going on in the dorms. I understand they want to keep us safe, but you can keep us safe and listen to what we have to say,” Grayson said. 

“I would like for the gym to open up because it’s open at the university center and if you think about it, our students still live there so if they come in and spread the virus, it’s the same thing. So, they need to open up things for residents at Wabash too,” said Gallizo.

“Stay safe and stay healthy,” Breitspecher said.

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