As someone who always processes things at least a month late, I am now getting hit by huge waves of nostalgia for my lost month and a half of second semester senior year. While thinking about all the friends I didn’t get to hang out with one last time, the projects I wish I was able to complete, and the faculty I missed talking to face-to-face, I want to also find a few silver linings or things to appreciate.
Although getting deep into Tiger King has been fun, there are a ton of things that just hit different in terms of personal fulfillment that I miss about USC’s campus:
- The extreme social-ness of USC—running into random people on campus and getting distracted talking to someone I haven’t seen since freshman year for hours
- Getting my hands dirty in Electrical Engineering labs and building cool projects (IoT thermostats, smart gardening systems, and more)
- The free samples in Trader Joe’s… man do I miss them
- Being pranked on campus by random YouTubers, no fear of social distancing
- LA’s rich assortment of things to explore, museums, restaurants, pop-up dessert festivals and more
- Spur-of-the-moment study sessions, board game nights, dinners, kickbacks, and club/work meetings with all my wonderful friends on campus, close by as one big happy Trojan family
These are the things I want to especially appreciate and be grateful for during these times:
- Faculty who have made themselves 110% accessible with even more online office hours than usual
- Having a once-in-a-lifetime chance to spend quality time with my mom and have family dinners every day (also, seeing my dog and enjoying the extra quality time at home with her that I would never have otherwise)
- The resurgence of my high school group texts and facetimes with everyone back home
- Being able to constantly text, zoom, call, or tag friends in memes to stay in touch with those who I care about
- Appreciating nature and spending more time walking or biking outdoors
- Time to read, reflect, and take things a little more slowly
Most of all, this time has only made me appreciate my experience at USC all the more. Being so nostalgic and homesick for campus shows how much of an impact the Trojan Family has made on me, and how important it will be for the rest of my life.