Campus, Coronavirus, News

‘It feels apocalyptic’: Student-life at CSULB dorms during the pandemic

Although most on-campus residents left student housing after Long Beach State encouraged students to move out, 119 students remain consolidated into four buildings at the Hillside College Dormitory. 

“It’s been weird because it feels… apocalyptic with so many people now gone; usually the residence halls are so busy,” said a third-year Residential Assistant who asked to remain anonymous. “But it’s been fine, the food got a lot better because the dining hall [is] putting in effort.” 

According to the RA, the Hillside Dining Hall remains open during the week for lunch and dinner but has fixed hours. The students are not allowed to dine-in; they can either take their food back to their dorms or eat outside. 


Student-residents leave the Hillside Dining Hall. Student and Residential Life mandates all residents to practice social distancing to wear a face mask while at the dining hall.

Ryan Guitare/Daily Forty-Niner

Inside the dining hall there is a limited number of people allowed in at a time. Everyone must wear masks, and there are signs on the floor enforcing students to stay six feet apart. 

All students live in their own rooms now. The common rooms are still open but large gatherings are discouraged. Many students stay in their own rooms and practice social distancing. 

“You’re not as distracted anymore because you’re not pressured to hang out with all these people,” said Rudy Garcia, a third-year international studies major. 

As for the RAs, they are still working and have the same amount of duties. They still check on residents, are on call over the weekends and work in the service center. RA Olivia Wildman said that at the moment, their biggest challenge is forwarding all the students’ mail. 

“The transition was definitely a little hectic with everyone moving out and then we consolidated everyone from Beachside and Parkside into Hillside just so we can maintain a singular dining hall and then sort of keep everyone centralized,” said Wildman, a fourth-year majoring in BFA animation. “But we are still spread out.”

Garcia and Enrico Babetto, a finance major and international student from Italy, said there’s not much students can do so many remain in their rooms.

“During the day I almost always study,” Babetto said.“I don’t usually go outside because there’s no one here but I try to be as positive as I can, and I just bought a ukulele.”

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What to know about COVID-19

Common symptoms:

● Cough                   ● Fever

● Tiredness            ● Shortness of breath

● Chills                      ● Shaking

● Loss of taste      ● Loss of smell

● Muscle pain        ● Headache

● Sore throat

Symptoms can begin to present one to 14 days after initial exposure, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

How is it transmitted?

● Close contact with someone, such as shaking hands or hugging.

● Contact with droplets from a sneeze or cough.

● Touching of eyes, mouth or nose with dirty hands.

Are you at risk?

● Have you traveled to an affected area within the past two weeks?

● Have you had close contact with someone who is infected?

If yes to either, and you begin to present symptoms, call your doctor and ask to be tested. 


There is currently no treatment for COVID-19, but the CDC recommends measures to contain the spread of the virus.

● Self-isolate; avoid contact with others including pets; only leave your house for food or medical attention.

● Wear a face mask.

● Wash your hands often and for at least 20 seconds; sanitizer must contain over 60% alcohol to be effective.

● Clean “high-touch” areas every day.  

● Maintain a six-foot distance from other individuals; abide by “social distancing” recommendations. 

● Avoid gatherings with more than nine people. 

 Alert health officials if you think you have COVID-19; monitor your symptoms.

Number of COVID-19 deaths in Long Beach

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