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As photographers at the University of Michigan, there are certain things we are accustomed to photographing: football games at the Big House, Central Student Government, President Schlissel and general happenings around Ann Arbor. This year was different.

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In that classic Hallmark movie sort of way, life in Rochester, Mich., seems to revolve around Christmas.

The group watches as Troy skates the pool bowl at the Ann Arbor Skatepark.

With a global pandemic, hostile political climate and a planet on the verge of dying, it is no wonder why so many look to drugs to cope with the existential crises around them. Drugs have always been looming over the youth, from opioid epidemics to Juul releasing flavored tobacco products.

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Inspiration can be a difficult thing to curate in a normal non-pandemic world. These past months, I had found myself feeling more hopeless and uninspired than ever in my life.

Jennifer Balang is a member of the Bursley Hall custodial staff. She has worked at the University for 21 years, and has worked at Bursley for three and a half years after transferring from working for 17 years in dining at Martha Cook.

The choice to reopen campus for the fall semester left many challenges in its wake, especially for the thousands of employees that work across the 18 different residence halls.

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Walking through downtown Ann Arbor on a Saturday night in December, in any other year, would be a lively experience. Bustling sidewalks filled with people shopping, going out to bars, and eating at the many restaurants nearby.

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