“My very personal power-up”

“The package deal in the last summer semester: two degree programmes, a part-time job and COVID-19. My very personal three-plus-one deal.

As for many other students, this meant spending a lot of time in front of a computer screen. From 14th to 15th March, suddenly everything was ‘remote’. Fine word, unpleasant situation. Especially in this semester – my last semester at University – direct contact to my professors would have been just as important for me as during the winter semester of 2014, when I was still a newbie…

After all, my professor teaching the master’s seminar told us before we even had to write our first paragraph: “First, you will do fine, then comes a really terrible phase. It will be like a rollercoaster ride, but some day you will finish it – I promise.” Who would not gladly accept qualified support with prospects like these?

Surprisingly, my master’s thesis supervisor and I managed the situation quite well. State-of-the-art telephone conferences still cannot replace interpersonal communication – here, my recently completed degree in communication studies comes in. Nevertheless, my professor took as much time as necessary, would have answered entire questionnaires and had encouraging words for me during every meeting. In this respect, without having any basis for comparison, it was an experience that was really okay – and I mean that.

On the day of the exam, I had a lot to deal with: Preparing the room (unhang the beautiful but inappropriate nude study in the background). A beating heart. Checking the router. Checking the router again. Stress. But as soon as all four persons were online, the atmosphere was very relaxed and we had a really nice conversation.

Rest in peace uni life, finally! But of course, even this last stage of my studies taught me something – especially regarding this eternally long paper, the great finish of remote studying: If your mind no longer works properly, close Word, shut down your laptop, turn off your guilty conscience and take a break from online studying. As basic as that sounds: You can and SHOULD take your very personal power-up this way.” – Hannah Kathan

Hannah studied Journalism and Communication Studies at the University of Vienna.

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