It’s December 2021, a time of cramming for exams, arranging holiday plans, and trying to keep everything afloat. U of T faces the painful decision to cancel student exchanges for the winter due to the evolving pandemic situation. I, along with many students scheduled for exchange, now scramble to figure out what the heck is happening for January. Forget exams, where am I going to live?
It’s the second of January 2022, and I can say I’ve finally settled down. Before U of T announced the cancellation of exchanges, I made the decision to postpone mine just a week before. But I spent a while panicking and figuring out how I was going to make my winter semester at U of T work. I’m a rigid planner so finding housing last minute was something I wasn’t prepared for. I was very lucky that the student residence I waitlisted for had a spot available!
Gladly, I didn’t drop any of the winter courses I enrolled in as a backup so my timetable adjustment was smooth. But I want to express that my heart goes out to everyone who had done the hard work for exchange – applying for visas, reserving an accommodation, even quarantining in the exchange location because the term was meant to begin in three weeks – while we have to prioritize safety, there are no words for how agonizing it is to have everything planned and prepared abruptly taken away from you. With classes being online for January I hope everyone gets a chance to adjust to these sudden changes.