Students React to the Arrival of Cohort 2 on Campus

On October 10 and 11, boarding and day students from Cohort 2 registered and moved into campus. With the last month of learning held virtually, it was the first time many Uppers and Lowers students returned to campus since March 2020. Upon their arrival, each student was required to take a rapid Covid-19 nasal swab test. Cohort 2 was recently prematurely released from their scheduled two-week quarantine period because they satisfied increased testing levels, according to the Rebecca M. Sykes Wellness Center.

Georgia Adams ’22, Cohort 2 Day Student

“It’s been really good to be back on campus, especially because of sports. It’s just nice to have something other than school to look forward to during the day… A lot of people, at least from the Class of [2022], decided not to come back, so I think it will be a while until everyone is back together. None of my teachers are really doing in person classes, so again, it’s really just about sports right now… I went to the mask decorating weekender [event] a couple nights ago in the Gelb tent, and it was so nice to just be able to feel like things are sort of going back to normal.” 

Niya Harris ’21, Cohort 1 Boarding Student

“For me, it’s pretty exciting. A lot of returning Lowers that I know, some of [whom] were my prefectees, are in my dorm now… I am feeling pretty good about Cohort 2 coming back. I do feel like it’s super messy when it comes to testing… The line was extremely long and circling onto the street… It was just really convenient before; there were just [fewer] people. We had the whole campus to ourselves, which was pretty nice. Now it just seems a little bit crowded, especially when we are in one space… You can’t have rules for everything. A lot of different things rely on house counselors’ leniency… When we first got on campus, everyone’s nerves were high. We had to make sure we got it right.”

Christopher Savino ’24, Cohort 1 Day Student

“The arrival of Cohort 2 has seemed nicely controlled from my point of view, although I would consider it a lot more lenient than Cohort 1… I feel like there is definitely a better energy with Cohort 2 on campus, you can definitely feel more of the community that makes [Andover] great… The testing protocols are definitely working, although as a day student it has been difficult for me having all different types of testing.” 

Sui Yu ’23, Cohort 2 Boarding Student

“I think the testing, masking, and the distancing are all mandatory for public safety, especially in the midst of this pandemic. However, when you have designated outside time, or when you have to go outside with a proctor or house counselor, it’s very controlling. The restrictions [for] going outside are a bit overwhelming… Hopefully, when we go in-person or [start] hybrid learning, it will get better.”

Hadrian Reppas ’22, Cohort 2 Boarding Student

“Right now, all the classes are still online, obviously, so [they] aren’t too different. Physically being here, seeing my friends and being able to eat with them has been nice… [Quarantine] is a little claustrophobic, [definitely] some cabin fever. I was able to get outside when I was in D.C. at home, and now I’m not, so that’s a little annoying… but I would say that the vibe [on campus] is better overall.”

Gabby Edokpa ’24, Cohort 1 Boarding Student

“In terms of safety, I think they did pretty [well]. I think the arrival of Cohort 2 day students was kind of sudden. Especially for Covid testing, there was a lot in one place at one time… I would say it’s a lot more lively on campus… From what I’ve heard some people are a bit scared by the arrival of more people, especially some of them being upperclassmen. It’s a bit nerve wracking, especially in sports. But most people are happy to have more people on campus. It’s a bit less lonely.”

Jack Pearlson ’23, Cohort 2 Day Student

“It definitely feels really good… It takes some of the loneliness out of the online classes… It’s been difficult to be on campus with a mask and be so far away from everybody and not being able to go into buildings, but I feel the school is doing the best they can. [It has] definitely [been] noticeable being a day student in Cohort 2 [rather] than a boarder, because the boarders are still in quarantine…  I am lucky enough to play hockey. I walk up to the rink everyday, and everybody seems to be having a really good time. [It] just reminds me more of what Andover was, and what it will be in the future.”