Big news for California: We are in the Red Tier! What does this mean for Vanguard? Campus will be having more activity in the next few months. From just relaxing in the Caf to watching events like Mock Rock. And next semester has given the option to have most classes in person. With so much going on, it almost makes students at Vanguard feel more normal. Therefore, thoughts arise for these upcoming months. Luckily, so far there’s been nothing but excitement and relief.
Senior Isaac Isome enjoys the thought of having more interactions with others around campus. Vanguard should be about obtaining a close relationship with others through God. This is why opening campus is a great opportunity to continue what Vanguard is designed to do.
“I think the Holy Spirit can accommodate these restrictions. But I think that it allows us a much more natural freedom in our own nature to be together. It allows us to be more truly ourselves,” says Isome.
Freshman can finally have that experience they’ve all been promised from Vanguard, “It’s time for more in person activities and start having more college community life become a priority,” says Gabriel Sirvent. “Simply because that is part of what we are paying for.”
“I can’t do much because of COVID,” says Leslie Velazquez. “But I’m glad that there’s open space where I can bring the memories I brought from home here.” For Velasquez, it’s exciting to have that connection she’s waited for at Vanguard by just greeting new people.
Brenner Farr also joins the rest of Freshman who “have been craving for that experience” even if it means just at the end of this school year.
As Vanguard moves on to the last two months of school, some classes are approved to be in person. With this, there have been a few mixed feelings about transitioning from online classes.
Velazquez is used doing schoolwork on her own time because she’s been home-schooled for most of her life. This is why nerves can get the best of her when it comes to thinking of the Fall semester.
“Personally, I’ve seen a lot of benefit with online school because it’s created an accountability for myself,” says Velazquez. “I think I will adapt back into an in person setting. It’ll just take me some time..but it’s going to be a better strides forward.”
As for students like Sirvent, they can’t wait to have a more interactive way of learning. Getting work done will be much easier and school won’t seem as difficult anymore.
“In person class time is easier for me to learn and stay focused as well as making connections with other students,” says Sirvent. “I tend to be introverted but this isolation is a bit much for even me.”
“Finally,” says Isome. “I don’t think it’s in our nature to look at a computer screen six hours a day….It’s not beneficial to how we were designed.” Isome explains that Zoom cuts off most of the communication that we all are so used to when we should all be so close in these hard times. Isome appreciates the way that interactions can impact someone and connect with a fellow student.
While doors open on campus, staying safe could become into a concern. Yet, students have decided to not bring down their guard on wearing masks or social distancing.
“My way of honoring the university involves being aware of those things,” says Isome. “I just want to be flexible to other people. Just want to be accommodating to them in what they’re trying to be precautious of. Before myself, I always want to value the other person who’s right in front of me; make sure they feel safe.”
Furthermore, Velazquez explains how the pandemic has taught everyone to be aware of their surroundings no matter how clean you are.
“Who knows the next virus? I want to make sure that I’m keeping myself safe,” says Velazquez. “You’re understanding the personal boundaries of another person…It’s creating that spacial awareness. It’s talks about our humanness.”
Anything can happen in the next coming months. Yet, students understand that life will keep going no matter what comes forth. In a way, we’ll learn to adapt to different ways the world turns and trust in God.
“We’re only prepared for what we know and we can only do so much. We have to be slow on our progression,” says Velazquez. “Changing our mindset that even though we’re getting out of COVID, we’re not gonna get back to normal. We have to be open to the idea that not everything is going to be the same anymore.”
“I know that whatever happens, it’s God’s way,” Farr says. “He knows what’s going on and that’s just what we’ll have to roll with.”
One thing’s for sure: if the opportunity comes where Vanguard lets campus be more open and active, then there is a reason to celebrate. Classes will be the least of it when we can all finally share with Vanguard community and be part of what God has founded on this university.