Villanova, we have done what the vast majority of us thought was impossible going into this school year: we managed to stay on campus through the entire semester and gave ourselves the chance for a full school year. We weren’t able to get here acting like we always do, however; we had to make changes and sacrifices to make sure that we were able to stay on campus this long. Now that we are two weeks away from the end of the semester, it is incredibly important to make sure that we do not forget about the commitments we made to one another at the beginning of this year.
It is certainly true that there is basically no chance we get sent home at this point. The problem with this thinking, however, is that it only considers how your actions will impact you. Sure, you can go out to a party with little or no repercussions, but if you contract COVID-19 in the process, you could end up giving it to a professor, staff member, or fellow student who is much more at risk than you are.
We have to keep our community in mind through these last few weeks on campus. Losing sight of this at this point would be regrettable on part of all of us.
It is equally important to begin thinking about what is going to happen when we go home for Thanksgiving, finals and winter break. For the first time in months for many, we will be seeing our parents and family members again. This means, however, that we will be seeing many older relatives who are significantly more at risk for COVID-19 than most of us are as young people. Equally as important as keeping our Villanova community in mind is keeping your family and home community in mind as well. If we are going to make it through the remainder of the COVID-19 pandemic, we need to continue to make sure that our communities are able to stay safe.
With any luck, the COVID-19 pandemic may be over soon, maybe. Many vaccine options are nearing approval, and it would not be unreasonable to think that some at risk members of our own communities will be able to receive it very soon, perhaps even before we return to campus in late January. The vaccine is not here yet, and until it is and even after it is, we need to continue to practice safety measures that were put in place to protect all members of our community.
With this in mind, let’s close out this semester as safely as possible. If you want to celebrate the end of this long semester, make sure to do so responsibly. The staff at The Villanovan knows that this community can make it through these last few weeks and end the spike that is beginning to occur. We were able to do it once this semester, so with this small spike we should easily be able to ensure that we keep things in check. Stay safe for the rest of the semester, for Villanova, your family, and your community.