All the people recommending to “find yourself” and “rest and recharge” during the pandemic have obviously never taken the Digital and Print Publishing Program! Being a college student during COVID-19 was no easy task. In particular, being in the DPUB program added an extra layer of… emotions, to say the least.
We went from meeting face-to-face, to meeting online, to not knowing if we would be able to print PRM 2020. Moving online was a learning process: long hours in Zoom, endless back and forth in Slack, Messenger, text messages, and emails. We worked with what we had: good or bad Internet connection, bigger or smaller screens. In the Editorial department, I was tasked with copy editing and proofreading articles on my tiny little laptop. I loved editing, though my eyes didn’t exactly appreciate my screen size!
As our commercial printer closed due to COVID regulations, our launch date got pushed back. DPUB students voted to continue working on PRM, even if that meant devoting extra time towards it during the third semester (the print version of PRM was initially set to launch at the end of the second semester). On top of finishing PRM, we had new courses, new instructors, and held a virtual toast when we finally sent the magazine to press.
I realized that COVID has also deprived us of another important experience: grumbling about taking summer classes! Being stuck inside so long that you can’t bear to see any more orange! Jokes aside, I walk by Langara very often now—I recently moved quite near the college, now that I don’t need to attend classes in there—and I can’t help but feeling there is something missing from my college experience. Maybe it’s just the arctic temperature of the Mac Lab?
A few of us met twice in the Production Room at the beginning of the summer semester to do proofings and sign-offs: finishing touches for the print version. Social distancing, masks, gloves, and tons of sanitizer didn’t prevent us from feeling excited about seeing each other again. After one of those meetings, Mishayla, our Art Director, hesitated in the doorway.
“You can go now, you’ve finished,” somebody said.
“I know,” Mishayla sighed. “I just wanted to see people!”