Ben Parker/Sun Senior Photographer

Students enjoy the emerging sun during a Wellness Day in early March.

March 18, 2021

Promise of Spring Renews Student Optimism

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As cloudy skies clear and temperatures rise, Cornellians are hopeful that winter gloom amplified by COVID will soon be a thing of the past. 

Throughout the past few months, many students have experienced periods of particularly low mental health amid poor weather and strict health guidelines.

“Winter is always hard for my friends and I since we are naturally very outdoorsy people,” Izzy Crame ’24 said. “Spending time with friends definitely helped cure my seasonal blues, but sometimes, during bad weather, my friends and I couldn’t see each other.”

Even students who normally enjoy the winter reported feeling dispirited this season, citing pandemic restrictions on the athletic and rock climbing centers as the culprit behind such winter malaise. 

Nadia Prasad ’24, a life-long rock climber, expressed frustration with the Lindseth Climbing Center remaining closed until Mar. 1. While understanding the reason behind the Center’s temporary shutdown, Prasad still “couldn’t help feeling sad” when the site wasn’t open for bouldering and climbing activities. 

To Prasad, closures of recreational centers as well as other social limitations brought on by social distancing regulations were a root cause of winter dejection. 

Ivan Dosev ’24 found himself in a similar situation. Dosev typically relies on swimming and working out as a stress reliever during the winter but, with the closure of indoor swimming facilities, his mental health declined. Now that the centers are open, however, Dosev and Prasad can pursue their stress-relieving activities.

Hopeful that vaccines will become more accessible, Dosev and others look forward to a time in which COVID-19 restrictions can eventually become less pervasive. 

Pranay Gupta ’24 expressed his excitement to play Kan Jam –– a popular flying disk game –– on Appel fields with his friends soon, if vaccination makes it possible.   

Avidly waiting for the cold Ithaca winter to pass, Crame said, “I will wake up every morning and go for a run because I know the spring weather is perfect for that. Doing that will allow me to be much happier, since running every morning helps my mental health.”