Yessica Cardozo Dominguez, a first-year music major, said she has not had time to explore UNC before, but can now learn more about places on campus.
“I have been going on the U-bus and exploring Franklin Street and the botanical gardens,” Cardozo Dominguez said. “I did not know Franklin Street that well, so it has been nice to learn more about the area.”
Cardozo Dominguez said she spends time outside for various activities, including studying.
“I like to play tennis with one of my friends on campus for fun,” Cardozo Dominguez said. “We play on the courts near Hojo.”
While Cardozo Dominguez has taken time to experience campus and be outside, she said she hopes students can be together and healthy once COVID-19 is no longer an issue.
“Being on campus is one of the most beautiful experiences for me as a first-generation student, but it’s saddening to see how much COVID-19 has taken from us,” she said. “Although I am happy to be here on campus, I have become anxious about COVID, and campus looks a bit lonely with all the students gone.”
Cardozo Dominguez also said there are benefits to staying on campus this semester.
“I really enjoy being on campus because I can connect with others more easily,” she said. “If I moved off campus, it would really be impossible for me to interact with other UNC students.”
Leighton Walsh, a first-year business major, said he spends a lot of his free time exercising outside to keep him busy when not in class.
“I’ve gotten into cardio and running all the trails,” Walsh said. “It helps me out with how to deal with all of what’s going on, so it helps me get out there and just enjoy the day.”
Walsh said living on campus can be lonely sometimes.
“As much as the community is still here, it almost feels empty at the same time just with how big the dorms are versus how many people have chosen to stay,” Walsh said.
Although campus life looks different this semester and friends are more difficult to make, Walsh said this is something he has to persevere through.
“If you’re going to live in a ghost town, this might be one of the places to do it,” Walsh said.