Today, I had my first in-person class at 9 a.m. in the chemistry building. I walked across the CCRB bridge at what would normally be passing time and saw a grand total of three people. In a classroom meant for over one hundred students, there were fifteen sitting rows apart with masks on. The professor prefaced every sentence about the syllabus with “this might change” and “we have to be flexible.” Overall, the experience was surreal.
Later I walked around the Diag, the dorms and the Union to see students spread across the grass and designated tables with their computers open. Many were on Zoom, others watching pre-lecture videos and just small group were hammocking and catching up — normal activites for the first day of school. It is hard to imagine this becoming the norm for campus, while at the same time it is comforting to see these students embracing the abnormal character of the semester. At the very least, it is official that we made it through the first day of hybrid classes, the first hurdle, but who knows how many unknown unknowns we have yet to conquer this semester.