The Future is Katie, St. Catherine University Magazine Spring 2021

Page 14

Connection in Uncertain Times: Navigating Senior Year, Together BY ELISABETH WULF ’21

My senior year has been full of firsts. It was my first year without entering the gates for the start of classes. It was also the first time I’ve been virtually employed. But this has also been a year of growing some of the strongest connections in this new reality. There is something oddly comforting in the bond between seniors who are jointly experiencing our final college year during the pandemic. The pandemic has pushed us to be more intentional about our conversations, the topics we learn, and the time we spend with one another. Pre-pandemic, I felt caught in a nonstop weekly cycle of commuting to events, classes, and work, finding time to study for exams, and trying to fit in a meetup with my professor or a friend. But now that classes are all at my fingertips online, I can take advantage of my professors’ office hours and better design my schedule.



These are just some discoveries in the “new normal.” I’ve accepted that my senior year doesn’t look how I wanted and that graduation won’t either because everything is tinged with uncertainty, leading to many unanswered questions in this uncharted territory. I find myself having thoughts associated with impostor syndrome: Are the goals I made before the pandemic going to align with the needs of the post-crisis world? Will my studies in the history of psychology and media match up with the real-world needs and demands of the future? Will I be able to serve in a professional role with purpose while others are struggling? Nevertheless, we seniors are completing our final degree requirements with some adjustments. The University set up a tiered system for courses to be in person and online depending on the course needs. Some are all online, some are hybrid, and some are entirely