Life in the Age of COVID-19 Student Perspective Christopher Ngoun (Student) – WesternU ‘22

Summary: Here’s an insight into Christopher Ngoun’s life in the age of COVID-19! Christopher Ngoun is a rising third-year dental student at Western University. He has been using this time to explore new hobbies, such as baking. Christopher has awesome tips on how to stay social while in isolation plus adjusting with the new normal remote online learning! The Article: On the Cusp: Volume V Issue I 2020 Spring Newsletter WesternU College of Dental Medicine Life in the Age of COVID-19 Student Perspective Christopher Ngoun (Student) – WesternU ‘22   How have you been spending your time? ● COVID-19 has been challenging me to find new hobbies to stay sane in social isolation. Initially, I found myself binging on Netflix shows and getting 8+ hours of sleep a night, which were things that I did not normally do prior to the pandemic. I have also been more active, running 2-3 times a week. However, after burning all those calories, I find myself spending a lot of time in the kitchen regaining back those calories and more. Baking has been one of my more time-consuming hobbies in the midst of this pandemic. There is nothing more satisfying than to be able to consume your own creation! Things that I have challenged myself to make from scratch have included: cheesecake, apple pie, banana bread, various cookies, and even a cake! What adjustments have you made during this pandemic? ● Adapting to remote online learning has been one of the biggest adjustments I have made during the pandemic. In the beginning, my work habits from home were not the best. I found myself getting easily distracted by watching TV, cooking, or playing with my dog. As a result, I started to procrastinate more than usual. However, as our online curriculum began to pick up, I started to develop a schedule, designating certain hours of my day to completing schoolwork or studying, which has helped me to get back on track. What challenges have you faced? ● It has been really tough not being able to hang out with friends and family. Now, we have to find creative ways to stay social. For instance, having a virtual happy hour with friends and family has become the new norm. Another significant impact due to COVID-19 is not being able to drill and practice in SIM. I do not recall ever going this long without using a handpiece since the start of dental school. What have you learned? ● I have learned not to take the basic things in life for granted. Never would I have ever thought that finding items like toilet paper, hand soap, and cleaning products would be so scarce in stores. Or even having to wear face masks and waiting in line just to get into grocery stores. However, I do realize that it is imperative for each of us to do our part during this pandemic in efforts to protect ourselves and those around us against COVID-19. Advice for students to maintain wellness during this time? ● We will get through this together so let’s continue to stay positive. Follow good hygiene practice daily, stay home, and minimize person-to-person contact to prevent the spread of infection. Stay safe and well everyone! Use the link below to check out the full Western University newsletter, where the rest of Life in the Age of COVID-19 can be found, featuring a WesternU faculty member, a practicing dentist, and much more!! (ON THE CUSP V.5.1 | May 2020)