Newman students forced to adapt at off-campus jobs

By Hope Eckley, Staff Writer

The COVID-19 pandemic has not only affected the school loves of Newman students, but many have also found themselves out of a job.

Meanwhile others, deemed “essential workers,” are having to adjust to a new normal at their workplaces.

The coronavirus has not only affected the health of many individuals, but it has also impacted the economy on an unprecedented scale. The unemployment rate was at 4.4% at the beginning of March 2020 but now has risen to around 13%.

“Students will be struggling to make money and pay their student loans if this continues,” junior Paige Wallace said.

Because all non-essential businesses have been closed, it is tough to make money, Wallace said, and college students don’t typically work enough hours to qualify for unemployment.

“My work, Genesis Health Club, closed at the beginning of spring break,” Wallace said. “I miss being able to go into work and be around that positive environment. I also miss being able to go to the gym to work out and stay healthy.”

Some students have been continuing their work at restaurants since those businesses are considered essential.

“My work at Ziggy’s has definitely changed,” Eck said. “We take a lot of precautions. Everything we do now is curbside. I am not really concerned about myself, but more about the customers. I know that we are taking care of ourselves by washing our hands and cleaning everything.”

Senior Ashton Reynolds has been working in Wesley Medical Center since fall of 2018, and she has noticed all the changes that are taking place to keep people safe.

“I feel safe working in the hospital,” she said. “We have protective equipment. No visitors are allowed and surgical masks are worn at all times. But I do miss the normalcy of life the most because things are constantly changing with protocols and precautions that it makes for an intense work environment.”

Courtesy Photo provided by UnSplash