I recently went back and reread one of my first ever blogs from about a year ago: “A Day in My Life: Freshman Edition.” It’s amusing to think how so much has changed in just one calendar year, so I thought I’d sit down to write the second part of what is shaping up to be a four-year long series. Here’s a typical Wednesday in my life as a sophomore at Tufts!
8:30 AM: My first alarm of the day goes off, and my roommate and I both startle awake. I arise with difficulty, find my phone, and turn the darned thing off before we both fall back asleep.
9 AM: My second alarm of the day goes off, which my roommate takes as her cue to actually awaken and begin her day. I go back to sleep until…
9:30 AM: My roommate’s Spanish class begins (virtually, from our room), and the dulcet tones of her 4th semester Spanish are what actually wake me up for good. I get ready for the day in the background of her Zoom call: brushing my teeth, getting dressed (off camera, of course), drinking my daily cup of coffee, and doing my hair and makeup. By the time I’m ready to take on the day, I have fifteen minutes in which I quickly pan over my French notes before…
10:30 AM: My French IV class begins (virtually, from our room), along with the first exam of the semester. My French class is one that has transferred over to a hybrid-modality relatively well: we meet on Zoom three times a week, with an in-person recitation once a week. We took the exam on the “Quizzes” section of Canvas—the jury's still out on whether that cram sesh fifteen minutes before class started actually paid off!
11:30 AM: Once my class ends, I order lunch from Hodgdon Food-on-the-Run using the mobile app that all of Tufts Dining is operating on this semester. While waiting for my food to be ready, I water my plants and partake in the kind of procrastination that wastes an hour without including any substantial actions or completed activities. I make my first venture out of the building to grab my food, then return to my room to eat before my next class.
1:15 PM: Fifteen minutes before my class starts at 1:30, I trek uphill from my room in Harleston Hall to Barnum Hall, where I’ll participate in one of two in-person classes I have this semester: Art of the Moving Image with Professor Malcom Turvey. The walk is absolutely gorgeous; it’s a perfect, high-sixties autumn day, and the trees are fully radiant in their reds and golds.
1:30 PM: Class takes place in the largest room in Barnum Hall, an auditorium that usually holds over 200 students. This year, the capacity has been severely restricted for social distancing, so my professor has split the 75 person class into two parts—each half has one class in-person and one class virtual per week. Although we all have to wear masks, being in a classroom is really comforting and something that I look forward to every week.
2:45 PM: My class ends, and I walk out of Barnum basement and straight onto Prez Lawn. I have almost two hours until my French recitation and the weather is too perfect to spend it in my room, so I grab one of the colorful Adirondack chairs that have been placed around campus. While on Prez, I watch my asynchronous Sociology of Asian Americans lecture, complete some work for my job as a Social Media Assistant for the Office for Campus Life, and actually start writing this blog (so meta, I know!).
4:30 PM: My French recitation is my only other in-person class this semester and takes place in Miner Hall, on the edge of the Academic Quad. My French TA is a senior from Québec and he spends the class telling us about the Québec education system, which differs highly from what we’ve got here in the U.S.!
5:10 PM: Class ends, and I immediately order dinner from Dewick 2, a pop-up takeout option that was introduced this year to de-densify the dining halls. After a quick stop on Tisch Roof to take in the beautiful view, my food is ready and I walk downhill to grab it. Once I’ve gotten my dinner, I make my last stop before returning to my residential building—getting tested for COVID-19. Every on-campus student is required to get tested twice a week this semester. While that might seem like a lot, it’s actually a very simple process that takes literally (literally!) less than two minutes. This rigorous testing program is the reason that we haven’t had an outbreak on campus yet and have been able to stay on-campus this far into the semester. The testing site is just across the street from my room, so I return to my room quickly, after which my roommate and I eat together and watch the season premiere of the Bachelorette.
8 PM: My last responsibility for the day is a quick Sarabande rehearsal. We have completely revamped our organizational logistics to account for coronavirus restrictions, but thankfully we are still able to dance together multiple times a week. I’m happy that I get to dance at all this semester, even if it requires wearing a mask and staying 6 feet apart from my friends.
9 PM: Once rehearsal ends, I retire to my room and end my day. The last few hours of my day always end with a shower and a couple hours of scrolling on TikTok.
Now, Wednesdays are the exception to my week. Every other weekday, all of my classes are virtual and I take them from my room. There are multiple days during the week in which I don’t frequent Tufts Dining at all, electing to order food to my residence hall or eat what I’ve got stocked in my room. Most days, I choose to study in Tisch Library instead of outside. But even though this day might be somewhat of an anomaly, it’s still a pretty good depiction of what kind of life you can live as a Tufts student.