On April 1, Brian Kemp, Georgia’s Governor, issued a statewide quarantine. Kemp issued this quarantine after finding out within the last 24 hours asymptomatic people could spread the COVID-19. Therefore, he urged Georgians to “shelter in place” to slow down the aggressive spread of the COVID-19. Unfortunately, this quarantine has induced many people into a state of hysteria. Georgians are now more anxious than ever and it’s affecting their daily lives. Currently, the people who are most anxious about the statewide quarantine are college students and here is why. College students have been displaced, unemployed, and forced to take on roles as essential workers.
Before, Kemp issued a statewide quarantine, many people were already socially distancing and self-quarantining. This is due to many people being aware, before Kemp’s address, that COVID-19 can be spread by asymptomatic people. Now that Kemp has forced non-essential workers to return home it has caused a great deal of stress for college students.
Azayala Rodriguez, a senior at Brenau University, finds it very difficult to not worry about money during this time. Recently, Rodriguez fears she will lose her job as an intern for Gainesville Water resources department due to shutdown of non-essential businesses. She stated “ I just moved into a new apartment with my girlfriend and we have bills to pay. I think we were only supposed to self-quarantine for two weeks but now it has transitioned into one month.”
Rodriguez says, to keep herself from constantly being anxious she rest’s to get her mind together before she has to get a second job. Furthermore she states “ I try to relax and try to do the things that are fun such as cook, clean, go for a walk and dance around my apartment all the time.”
Although, Rodriguez is heading to the sanction of the Governor, others, quite literally, can not. Charlene Hendricks, a senior at Brenau University, works as a DoorDash driver and has continued to serve her community as an essential worker during COVID-19. Hendricks’ primary job as a party coordinator has been postponed and now she must rely on the income support provided by DoorDash. As an essential worker Hendricks is putting herself at risk everyday she leaves her home but she sees it quite the opposite.
“I feel like I am helping a lot of people by bringing their food. Many people can not leave their homes or may have to feed their kids since they are not at home to cook. My job helps people have a way to eat dinner.”
Although Hendricks is not unemployed like many of her peers, the pressure of her job as an essential worker weighs down on her. So to keep her mind at ease during this quarantine she states “ I do work and painting to keep my mind at ease and be one with myself”.
As the quarantine lockdown withholds the uncertainty of life remains to loom over college students’ heads. Will I be able to find a job or how long will this quarantine last? But one thing college students can agree on is finding your “tick ” that calms your anxiety. Moriah Lee, a junior at Brenau University, says “before I start my day I watch a sermon and pray. That significantly helps with me feeling less anxious”.