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The first week of quarantine was blissful. After discovering unheard-of quantities of free time — a commodity for any Princetonian — I decided to make myself busy. Amidst a flurry of online courses and new projects, I decided to get back into the daily yoga routine I’d abandoned freshman year, pick up three new languages (two of which I, admittedly, already had a background in), read a book a day, and relax in the evening with the Metropolitan Opera’s nightly livestream. For the eternal overachiever like myself, quarantine was heaven: I finally had the time for all of the interests I had neglected for most of my Princeton career.
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced us to reckon with deep structural problems in our society, such as global climate change and economic injustice. To rectify those problems, we need to recognize that all of us hold responsibility for both these problems and their solutions.
The number of students testing positive for COVID-19 that University Health Services (UHS) is aware of has quintupled over the last six days.
According to a report released by the USG Committee on Student Housing and independent statistical analysis conducted by Yang Song ’20, this year’s undergraduate room draw order was randomized properly.
The University will add the pass/D/fail (PDF) option to all undergraduate courses, according to an announcement from Dean of the College Jill Dolan. Decisions to move individual classes to PDF-only will be made on a course-by-course basis.
In the past week, students have been gradually finding out which classes they can take for a grade and which classes they cannot — whether by Blackboard post, email, or casual mention over Zoom. Some are still waiting on concrete answers.
At 7 p.m. EST on March 26, the University announced that it has offered admission to 1,823 students for the class of 2024, from a pool of 32,836 applicants — representing a 5.55 percent acceptance rate. The 1,032 regular decision acceptances supplement the 791 Single-Choice Early Action (SECA) acceptances that the University released on Dec. 12, 2019.
As COVID-19 continues to accelerate and hospitals face shortages of critical equipment and supplies, symptomatic students — many of whom have left campus — are finding it difficult to access tests.
Funnily enough, the COVID-19 pandemic has brought some unexpected, if short-lived, news. Global carbon emissions have fallen (China’s by as much as 25 percent), toxic air pollution has declined in cities around the world, and places like the Venice Canal, which typically suffer from overcrowding and water pollution, are running clear and teeming with aquatic life. As governments move to shut down industrial and commercial activity, the environment appears to be benefitting.
The coronavirus has escalated to the point where it affects every single aspect of life. That’s not news, by now. For Princeton students, virus prevention measures have booted most of us from campus and forced all of us to attend class virtually. Consequently, the grading system for many classes has changed.
On March 11, Dean of the College Jill Dolan notified undergraduates that they had eight days to pack up their dorm rooms, return home, and stay there. Only students who met the “strictest criteria” of need would be exempt.
I had forgotten the joy I received from checking out books from the library. When I was in kindergarten, we were only allowed to take one book from the school library each time my class went, and we were only able to take the book from the library to the classroom. When my teacher announced sometime in January of that year that we would now be allowed to take our library books home, I was thrilled. I was at that school until eighth grade, and as the years went by, the library rules relaxed around things such as the number of books we could check out at once. And I took advantage of that library as much as I possibly could. Yet something changed when I arrived at my high school. The first time I tried to check out a book from my high school’s library, I wasn’t able to do so because I wasn’t yet in the system. As coursework and extracurriculars took center stage in my life, I never really returned to the library — at least not to check out a book. It also didn’t help that everything at my high school was either online or had to be purchased.
Harvard University President Lawrence S. Bacow announced that he and his wife had tested positive for COVID-19, in an email sent yesterday to Harvard affiliates. Community members from all eight universities in the Ivy League have tested positive for the virus.
Jianing Zhao ’20 had a busy spring ahead of her. She was directing two shows slated for production in the coming weeks: her original adaptation of the Chinese novel “Lust, Caution” with Princeton Chinese Theater and a participatory, site-specific production of Eugène Ionesco’s “The Chairs,” in collaboration with the French theater workshop L’Avant Scene. “The Chairs” was to be Zhao’s senior project with the Program in Theater.
All around us, state and local governments are taking measures to slow the spread of the COVID-19 epidemic. Schools are shutting down, leaving millions of children in the hands of parents for whom childcare, in the age of social distancing, is no longer an option. Small businesses are shuttered, straining our national economy.
On Saturday, March 21, the University’s Dean for Research Pablo G. Debenedetti announced that all “non-essential on-campus” research activities would cease in response to Executive Order 107, which New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy signed on the same day.
The town of Princeton, along with the United States, is already feeling the devastating economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Last week, nationwide applications for unemployment benefits surged by 33 percent. Governor Phil Murphy said in a CNN interview on Monday that unemployment in New Jersey is “going up dramatically.”
On March 12, Alonso Perez-Putnam ’21 woke up to learn that COVID-19 had reached Cuba.
Few things can pull a Princetonian out of bed before 9 a.m., but induction into Phi Beta Kappa is one of them. Each year, in the early hours of Class Day — 8:45 a.m., to be precise — about 140 seniors join the nation’s oldest and most prestigious academic honor society.
In a press release sent earlier today, the Municipality of Princeton announced that there have been 10 total cases of COVID-19 among Princeton residents. At least three of these individuals are over 65 years old, and one individual is a University student.