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After The Coronavirus Pandemic Upended Their Previous Academic Year, MSU Students Arrive On Campus

Michigan State University Sophmore Matthew Rouse stands outside of Holden Hall holding a green cart with wheels. He is wearing a blue tshirt with basketball shorts. The green cart holds boxes. Holden Hall is a brick building with a four door entrance. On the building is a banner that says "Welcome East Holden Hall" in green letters. On the left of the words is the Spartan logo in green.
Michelle Jokisch Polo
Michigan State University sophmore Matthew Rouse is making the last trip into MSU dorm Holden Hall with his belongings.

Many Michigan State University students are moving into campus this week. That’s after the coronavirus pandemic shifted their previous academic year towards virtual learning.

Row of cars are parked outside of Michigan State University dorm, Holden Hall.
Michelle Jokisch Polo
Cars line up outside of Holden Hall.

A line of parked cars is slowly forming on both sides of the streets leading into the entrance to Holden Hall at Michigan State University.

Students and their families are hauling belongings into their dorms in large green carts, leaving car trunks popped open and doors ajar.

Chaz Petrosky stands outside of Holden Hall. He's wearing a gray Michigan State University t-shirt, black basketball shorts, and a lanyard that's holding a set of keys and black shorts.
Michelle Jokisch Polo
“I think its going to be almost a freshman experience but not exactly the same," MSU sophomore Chaz Petrosky said. "We are obviously not freshmen so people are going to expect more out of us. You can’t do as much stupid stuff as you normally would.”

Many are carrying boxes, and plastic tubs full of clothes and cleaning supplies.

Everyone around is wearing a mask.

Chaz Petrosky is on his last trip bringing items from his dad’s truck into his dorm. He’s with his roommate Matthew Rouse.

“Its a lot less chaotic. I was definitely more ready to move in last year than I was this year just cause we were locked in the house for so long last year," Petrosky said. “Its a lot warmer too than I thought."

“Yeah! Its very warm," Rouse said.

Petrosky is a sophomore and a packaging major at MSU. He said this year on campus is going to look a lot different than it would have, had he been able to live here as a freshman.

“I think its going to be almost a freshman experience but not exactly the same. We are obviously not freshmen so people are going to expect more out of us," he explained. "You can’t do as much stupid stuff as you normally would.”

I ask him how he’s coping having to say goodbye to his parents and to life back home in Bay City.

“I'm an only child. It's very hard," Petrosky responded with tears in his eyes.

Michigan State University sophomore Amanda Jeffries is wearing a black crop top and jeans. She is standing next to her father Mike Jeffries. He is wearing an MSU cap, black shorts and a gray underarmour shirt and is leaning. On the right of Mike Jeffries is his wife Christina. Christina is wearing a black tank top and sunglasses.  The three are standing behind their truck. The door of the truck is open and on top of the trucks bed is a brown rectangle cardboard box.
Michelle Jokisch Polo
Michigan State University sophomore Amanda Jeffries stands next to her parents, Mike and Christina Jeffries, outside of Holden Hall on move-in day.

On the other side of the street are Amanda Jeffries and her dad Mike. She’s also an incoming sophomore.

“I'm excited," Amanda Jeffries said.

“I never had this experience ‘cause I commuted to school, but I'm excited for her and hope that she has a good time. I hope she keeps her grades up," Mike Jeffries said.

Mike Jeffries said he thinks the university is taking the right precautions to keep his daughter safe from COVID.

“I'm kind of not the 'worry-type' guy. That's what the wife does, so we're kind of the yin and yang. But I kind of go with the flow and we've been vaccinated. We try to stay away from big groups and do what we can," he added.

This year the university is mandating COVID-19 vaccinations for all students, with very limited exceptions. Masks are also required in all indoor spaces.

Amanda Jeffries hopes it will all be enough to keep her at school this year.

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