Wave of Cold-like Symptoms Generates On-Campus Stress

Joseph Abrams ‘23
Chief News Editor

Much like the newest style of L.L. Bean boots and the unparalleled capacity to wear shorts in the cold, sickness has spread throughout the Holy Cross student body. It seems that most classrooms are filled with tense, room-silencing sneezes and enough sniffles to drive a focused man mad. Individual teacher’s mask mandates are being reinstated and reworked, roommate tensions may be higher than ever, and the Lobby Shop’s stockpile of Dayquil has never been more coveted than it is now. 

But seriously– this wave of flu-like symptoms can’t come at a worse time. Many students are finding it challenging to simply be sick at a time where solidifying first impressions are merging with  first major assignments– so much so that some students are prioritizing their studies over their health. Mckenna Best ‘23 said that “I really wished that I could’ve stayed in bed and put away my notebooks for the few days that I was under the weather, but I didn’t want to make a bad impression on my new professors.”

Others, like fellow senior Will Muller, have noticed that classes in general have felt more empty than usual: “I had to miss class last Wednesday— I felt so fatigued and when I went back to classes the next week, my classes felt so empty. A lot of students didn’t show up for sure, and I actually thought some of them had dropped the class.” 

But classrooms, pool tables at White Eagle, bleachers at Polar Park, and the marathon-like lines at Kimball aren’t the only litmus test for how campus residents are handling the wave of runny noses: rooms are too. Roommate agreements, the too often ignored but otherwise necessary glue between forced triple bunkmates in Brooks and apartment style suitemates in Williams, might need a change to include protocol for sickness. For most, a roommate’s sickness isn’t just their own inconvenience but a premonition of what’s to come. Bryan Crue ‘23, victim of the sickness and roommate of the aforementioned William Muller, caught the cold as it circulated through his apartment: “I was the last person to get sick in my apartment and the sickness seemed to linger from one person to the next. I felt fatigued for a few days, unmotivated too, and it was a struggle to do my work”.  

However, despite what our pandemic-conditioned minds might want us to believe, this new bug doesn’t appear to be COVID-related. For most, symptoms are only lasting the span of a few days and don’t include some of the more tell-tale signs, like fever, of the COVID-19 virus. Still, many professors have a blanket “don’t come to class” rule just to avoid the possibility of COVID spread in the case of sickness. So, check in with your professors, and yourself, if you feel that you’re coming down with something.

Photo Courtesy of VM
Fenwick Sun

Categories: News

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