Hillsdale College announced it would suspend in-person classes for the remainder of the spring semester.       Nolan Ryan | Collegian

We never dreamed the semester would turn out like this. 

We all expected to come back from spring break refreshed, ready for a beau­tiful Hillsdale springtime, for exams and good weather, for pro­fessors to conduct classes outside, for walks across campus and in the Arboretum. 

But the semester we expected is not what we received. Instead, we were sent home, and forced to text, call, and FaceTime our friends instead of seeing them in person. 

In quar­antine, we’ve learned to be inten­tional with our friend­ships. You can’t depend on just-so-hap­pening to see a friend up the hill. Now, if you’re going to stay in touch, you have to plan to do it. This is a lesson we should all take with us. When things go back to normal, we should con­tinue to be inten­tional in our relationships. 

We’ve learned to not take things for granted, and we’ve learned to value simple, everyday moments. Seem­ingly mundane meals in the cafe­teria mean so much more to us now that we’ve been deprived of them. Going to class, once a chore, seems more mean­ingful after resorting to online learning via Zoom or email.

Hillsdale College is, at its best, a com­munity in common pursuit of truth. We rec­ognize the value of what campus offers, espe­cially now that we cannot be there. But even in the reality of coro­n­avirus, we are blessed to live in an age of tech­nology — we can see and talk with our pro­fessors and peers while sep­a­rated by thou­sands of miles. We can entertain our­selves with fun — if not annoying — Instagram chal­lenges between friends.

Quar­antine has taught us to make the best of what we have, and come to terms with things that are out of our control. It taught us to be thankful for our health and the health of our friends and family.

We’ve learned a lot this semester, not just in the classroom, but outside of it, too. Let’s not forget what we’ve learned, but instead, take it with us for the rest of our lives. After all, that’s the purpose of a Hillsdale education.