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Connection Check: How students are keeping in touch with friends during the pandemic. By jessica melkonyan

The pandemic has brought students to a communicative dilemma given the tough circumstances of limited opportunities to interact with their friends during distance learning and quarantine. The only alternative they have is to virtually meet up to catch up on each others' lives.

Senior Kelly Stewart uses Group FaceTime to keep in touch with friends Nadia Montiel and Emily Flores.

Sometimes texting is just not enough to satisfy your social needs. Senior Kelly Stewart talks about her occasional sessions of Group FaceTime with her friends during the social distancing era.

"Me and my friends occasionally do Group FaceTime," Stewart said. "We try to stay connected with each other."

It's been a hassle trying to always keep in touch with friends, especially since these past eight months have been rough with social interactions for students. Given the fact that the only in-person communication you get is with the same people every single day, like a scheduled routine, friendships are an ultimate substitution to this.

"You don’t really see people a lot unless it’s the people that you live with, which could get annoying," Stewart said. "You feel like, oh yeah I’m ready to talk to new people."

Despite the urge to physically be with friends, Stewart wouldn't agree to a safe plan to hang out with friends in person.

"Although we all want to go outside, it may not be too safe" Stewart said.

Juniors Diego Hernandez and Allison Puc use Instagram Video Chat to communicate.

In some cases, calling someone may not be the best method because you never know if that person will answer. Junior Diego Hernandez feels that texting is his most reliable source recently.

"All I can really do is message some of my friends," Hernandez said. "I'm kind of lost on what they're doing at the moment, as much as I want to know."

A large part of Hernandez's social life was meeting new people, whether it was a brief interaction or a long-term friendship. Ever since the strike of the pandemic, this has been a difficult task for Hernandez.

"I can't find someone in the halls (like before), so it's been kind of constant (communication)," Hernandez said. "I (liked) knowing that any day I (could) meet anyone and (with) the pandemic, (I) lost that."

Freshman Monica Gonzalez Group FaceTimes with her sister junior Danielle Gonzalez and a long-time friend.

Freshman Monica Gonzalez talks about her struggles with the lack of communication as she's entered the new school year virtually and without familiar faces.

"I haven't really been able to talk to a lot of people, especially as a freshman," Gonzalez said. "You don’t really get to make new friends."

Gonzalez feels that all this purely virtual communication is strange. Given the fact that she can't have an alternative to interact with peers, she claims she would take the opportunity to reconcile with her friends.

"If you do it safely and make sure to be careful," Gonzalez said. " Yeah, I would (go out with my friends)."

Created By
Jessica Melkonyan
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Credits:

Created with an image by Chris Montgomery - "Zoom call with coffee"