Corona Virus Changes Student Lives


Bill Kaiser

People begin to stock up on items that have become useful such as hand sanitizer, masks, and toilet paper. Non-perishables have also come into high demand, which has led to stores running out of stock very quickly.

Sandhya Ganesan, Opinion Editor

As the coronavirus continues to broaden its reach, people in California are not only in danger of catching it, but are experiencing the secondhand effects of the virus. 

“When the first outbreak occurred, my immediate family and I were immediately concerned about our extended family and their well-being. Fortunately, they were farther away and it had not affected them yet,” said Alison Li, a sophomore at Tesoro high school who has family quarantined in China. 

With the number of cases skyrocketing rapidly, they were eventually exposed to it, and the Chinese government’s policies towards the virus began to affect her family. 

“I found out because of a family group chat that they updated, in addition to my cousin who is a nurse in the region. It was scary thinking that someone I loved was at risk, so we attempted to send them supplies and any aid possible” said Li. “Often, my family and I spend time video calling our relatives, finding support in their health.” 

On top of dealing with the news from her family in her country of origin, she has become acutely aware of the racial connotations that come with the virus spreading. “Thankfully I have not personally experienced any racial prejudice because of the virus, but I have seen online videos of those wrongly accused of such. Though I know, at any moment, I could be subject to stereotypes and overgeneralization,” said Li. 

Li believes that jokes are a way to cope with stress, however, they do have a heavy impact on her, as she is extremely aware of the struggles that come with the virus. 

“Knowing people are still so ill and desperate for help, it becomes insensitive when someone makes a joke, yet doesn’t know the extent and devastation of the issue,” said Li. 

In addition to the emotional toll that the virus takes on families overseas, students have begun to feel the effects of its proximity. 

“The hospital gets a delivery of supplies on the first of every month, and if they run out at the end of the month, they are kind of screwed,” said senior Alyssa Niedziela, whose mom currently works in a hospital. 

“It’s hard for them, because obviously doctors need supplies more than just common people because they are exposed to it more,” said Niedziela, “My mom is not too scared about it because it’s like the common flu for her. I’m not worried about it because she knows what precautions to take.” 

Niedziela believes that people’s rush to overstock on supplies because of corona is harmful to the people who are exposed to these cases on a daily basis, and wishes a logical, unexaggerated approach would be taken when it comes to supplies. 

Knowing people are still so ill and desperate for help, it becomes insensitive when someone makes a joke, yet doesn’t know the extent and devastation of the issue,

— Li

Students at SJHHS, though in the demographic that is not at risk to the virus, are also experiencing changes in their lives, and school trips are being cancelled as a safety measure for both teachers and students.

“I am sad that I am now not able to go to New York, but whatever is best for my health and others is most important. If we were to end up going, there is a possibility of us getting quarantined in New York, and that’s scary to me. I wouldn’t want to be there not knowing how long I would be staying,” said sophomore Mina Mahmoodzadeh, who is part of the drama department at SJHHS. 

“There are workshops for tech and we do not know if we are going to get the same opportunities if it were to be postponed, and we wouldn’t get them at all if it was cancelled,” said sophomore Jadyn Fox, a student in stagecraft. 

Mahmoodzadeh and Fox both believe they would be okay if they were to contract the virus because they are in the demographic that can handle it well, however Mahmoodzadeh would be worried about coming home. 

“I would be worried about my loved ones that I have that are in the older age range because I have people who are close to me that have asthma and heart problems. I worry a little bit if I were to come back from New York and somehow transfer the virus to them as it would be a lot more serious if they had it” said Mahmoodzadeh. “It’s frightening that it is happening to people around the world, and evidence shows it is very unlikely for it to be lethal in my age group, but I’m more worried about the people around me for who the virus could be lethal to.”