With life, there are always road blocks and circumstances that are out of our control but what we can control is how we react and move forward from this. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, it has definitely taught how to navigate school and life through adversity. With everything on pause, you have to maneuver through these challenges with an optimistic and open minded approach. Through these challenges, I've learned how life and work can be taken for granted. But through it all, I am very grateful that I have the opportunity to face these challenges head on and adapt in my learning.
What extracurricular activities do you typically participate in? What does this look like in the new social isolation environment?
Being more physically active, community support, more cooking, spending more time with family and being more involved in their education through this distant learning. This new socially isolated environment is something that we've needed. When reflecting on life in isolation, it puts me in a different perspective on how we as humans needed a pause in life to cherish everything we have and appreciate our loved ones and what we take for granted in these challenging times like being able to do extracurricular activities socially.
How are you staying active during this unique time?
Running, jogging daily, meditation
Do you have any creative ways for staying connected with your peers?
Facetiming/Zooming family and friends, sending letters and postcards
Talk about how you have adjusted your environment to accommodate your class/study needs.
At first, I didn't think distant learning would be difficult as the DNP program is virtually taught/primarily online as being able to leave the house to study was the norm. But with everyone in the household converting to distant learning and the Stay-At-Home lockdown closing essential study locations and buildings, it definitely brought a new challenge in the way I adjust to studying and learning in a busy environment. Through these adjustments, it has brought a new role as a parent-teacher in the household, which has added a new element in my daily student life while being isolated at home. From adapting to these changes, it's definitely taught me how to time manage better to open up time to study and learn while schooling my children and having their own independent learning, as well as teach me how to be able to ask for help and be optimistic in my learning. Of course, these times can be stressful, especially late in the semester while dealing with uncertainties so it has brought me to learn how to stay calm in these times and find what brings me at ease and reflect in these times, bringing ease to my learning.
What is something that provides you with inspiration during this time?
My faith, my family and reflecting on humanity and the difficulties others face every day but are in circumstances not so welcoming and pleasing like the ones we as a country in are. It has put me in perspective about how fortunate we are and how others are facing the same challenges while being underserved and underrepresented, which has continued to inspire my drive in why I do what I do in helping others with this degree in the future. I want to be able to use times like these to motivate me and reflect on what it takes to help others and humanity during crisis.
Anything else you want to share?
I want to thank my professor Dr. Diana Drake as well as the DNP program and the University of Minnesota for this opportunity to share my story and be able to connect with others with this platform during these times of adversity and uncertainty.
"When the COVID-19 pandemic hit the U.S., all sense of consistency, routine, and normalcy was disrupted and many of us struggled. While we are anxious for things to go back to 'normal,' I hope we will make time for creative reflection on how we can move forward, instead of going back. What does a better future for our communities look like and how can we get there? Can we envision and achieve a new, more equitable 'normal?' I am confident that the University of Minnesota community is up to the challenge and right for the task."