Maliha Rahman

The COVID-19 pandemic has completely changed my outlook on multiple parts of my life. I used to be a strict planner and try to ensure that all of my days were planned almost perfectly. I would write to-do lists with every task that I had to complete that specific day, and if I didn’t finish them, I would be disappointed in myself for not trying hard enough.

When the pandemic caused schools to commence online learning, I had to adapt to a completely different way of learning and studying in order to pass my classes. It was difficult for me because I prefer in-person learning compared to online classes.

It was also near the end of my junior year, arguably one of the hardest years in high school. I felt pressure to keep my grades up and perform well in my classes because those grades would be used to apply to colleges at the beginning of my senior year.

Studying for my AP tests was also a very stressful time for me. We were reviewing AP Calculus online, and Mrs. Ewing wrote problems on her glass sliding door in order to help us study. I struggled to remember concepts from the units that I did well in; it seemed like I completely forgot all of the information I learned. Ms. Mangone also assigned us DBQs to do for each unit, which helped a lot, but I could not manage my time properly which worried me even more.

When the exam days finally came, I was relieved to be done with the work and move on. I completely wiped my brain of any AP material after the exams.

Now that it is my senior year, I have easier classes with less of a workload; online classes are slightly more manageable this way, and I find having time to watch Big Time Rush on Netflix.

I now understand how life can change at any minute, and not every aspect of my life has to be planned. Sometimes, it’s better to go with the flow rather than be strict with every part of my day.

I am honestly looking forward to finally graduating high school and spending more time with my family before leaving for college. I am hoping that my experience at UCF will be much better, due to the possibility of attending in-person classes and talking to people more outside of a phone screen.

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