‘It seemed right’: Lincoln students on why they decided to stay at home for lockdown

With another lockdown imposed, students were faced with a choice

On January 4, Boris Johnson announced that England would be placed into a third lockdown, once again bringing England to a near standstill. This disruption left many students with the dilemma of whether to go back to their student households or stay at home, especially given the fact university students were not mentioned once in Boris Johnson’s statement.

For those doing medicine, education, social work and other practical courses it was advised that they return to their university city for face to face teaching after receiving a negative coronavirus test result. At first, for all other students, it was suggested they stay at their current address and not move back and forward between their uni home and permanent home. However, the university announced, students could return to university if needed, for personal reasons.

After the lockdown announcement, The Lincoln Tab ran a poll on Instagram, asking students if they would be returning to Lincoln or staying at home. 38 per cent of students voted they would be staying at home.

The Lincoln Tab spoke to students who have chosen to stay at their home instead of Lincoln over lockdown:

‘I have my whole family to support me’

Sylwia Marciniak, a third year law student said: “It’s much cheaper staying at home because everyone contributes to food and cleaning. Uni is just ridiculously expensive and my flatmates decided to stay at home too. I think tuition fees and rent should be reduced. I really want to be able to return before the next academic year as I have a lot of revision to do and would still like to enjoy some uni life before I leave to go to work.

“As I’m home I have my whole family to support me and my boyfriend who I am able to see at a safe distance. Sadly I feel as though my uni work is not to the best standards whilst being at home so its like a constant battle and doing well at uni is so important we really could do with more support.”

‘It would be boring on my own’

Anna Murphy, a third year history student at the University of Lincoln said: “I decided to stay home as I thought it would be safer and I’d be able to save on living costs, also not everyone in my house is moving back so It would be boring on my own, but I’m still sad that I’m missing out on uni life. The online library resources are pretty good but sometimes I find it difficult to work at my laptop 100 per cent of the time and I can’t access everything online which is annoying.”

‘I wouldn’t be able to see my friends anyway’

Alecia May told The Lincoln Tab: “If I had gone back to Lincoln I wouldn’t be able to see my friends anyway due to the lockdown, at least staying home meant I could see my family, plus I just got a new car so if  I do feel too claustrophobic I can always go for a drive to get away or go for a walk.

“Depending on how teaching is I may go back up to Lincoln as I do like having my own place, it also depends on if my job opens up again as it’s a bar. At home, I do feel more supported but it’s harder to do work due to more distractions. I hope that we are in Lockdown until April at the earliest, as horrible as that may be at least it might help the situation a bit more.”

‘Uni is just not the same during a lockdown’

Lucy Mills said: “I decided to stay at home because I’d be with my family instead of on my own at the uni house. Over the Christmas break, I’ve gotten used to my surroundings by going walks in my area which has helped me maintain a positive mindset. If I had gone back to uni I would have felt really lonely and I’d really miss my family. If all my flatmates had moved back I would have too but uni is just not the same during a lockdown.”

‘It seemed right to stay home’

Briony Hatliff, a second year Criminology student told The Lincoln Tab: “I was due to come back to Lincoln but after the announcement it seemed right to stay at home. I struggled in the last lockdown as I was stuck in a room by myself 24/7, so thought this time around it would be a lot better to at least have my family around me for support.

“Personally, I think the lockdown will go on for a lot longer than expected in which case I’ll probably stay at home until the next academic year. I’m hoping that my course will stick with online learning. It’s not the same online but there is no practical work that requires us to be on campus so it is a lot safer.”

The University of Lincoln remains open. The Library, Student Support Centre and Student Wellbeing Centre and Health Centre are open, both on-campus and online, and support continues to be available for students through personal tutors and the Students’ Union.

Related stories recommended by this writer:

Lockdown 3.0: Here’s what you can access on campus at Lincoln

‘I have my own space and freedom’: Lincoln students on why they are staying in the city

Lincoln students who need to return to uni for personal reasons can come back to campus