The Media School

IU students’ civic habits have changed since the pandemic, voting and shopping from home.

March 11th, 2021 by

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected some of the most normal routines, such as shopping and voting, according to three IU students interviewed at Teter Quad and Memorial Stadium. 

What’s happening: Vaccines are being introduced across Indiana, cases are dropping in Monroe County and local businesses are lifting restrictions on capacity and indoor activities. However, some routines have been permanently altered. 

  • Emma Christoff, 19-year-old IU sophomore from Scottsburg said, “I ended up voting by mail because I didn’t want to go to the polling booths, so it was a new experience.”

Background: While restrictions are being lifted, some students are still protecting their health and safety by staying in more. 

  • “I do a lot of door-dashing, so picking up food or having it delivered to me so I don’t have to be around so many people,” Christoff said.

 Izzy Myszak, 19-year-old IU sophomore from Scottsburg is still active in her community. 

  • “I still frequent local businesses the same as I did before the pandemic,” she said.

Of note: All three IU students said they were a part of some volunteer organization in high school or before the pandemic, but none have volunteered since the pandemic began. 

Luke Price, 19-year-old freshman from Zionsville, said he was a part of a volunteer club in high school, but has not volunteered since coming to IU.

  • “I think people are definitely more standoffish about it now,” he said. 

Myszak said volunteering opportunities are not available now like they were before the pandemic. 

The bottom line: Students and others in Bloomington must decide their own safety limits when it comes to community interactions and involvement during the pandemic.  

“If you want to go volunteer then you kind of have to think about everyone else around you as well. Like your roommates and your family, because if you go out volunteering and you end up getting COVID then it’s important that people know, that you understand that you could be putting your family and your roommates in danger as well.”

Emma Christoff, 19, Scottsburg

“I would say it’s changed, the way I do things a little bit. I rely a lot more on like delivery services to do it so I don’t have to go into a place and get it. ... I mean I still frequent local businesses the same as I did before the pandemic.”

Izzy Myszak, 19, Scottsburg.

“I just feel like I don’t go out as much to get things and I just make do with what I have most of the time unless I actually need something.”

Luke Price, 19, Zionsville