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On-campus athlete thrives during COVID-19 semester

By Jessica King

Staff Writer

COVID-19 has forced students to adapt to a challenging new way of living, both on and off-campus. For Skylar Parker, a freshman striker for Tyler Junior College’s women’s soccer team from Katy, Texas, it is unlike any college experience she could have imagined.
Due to COVID-19 guidelines, Parker said, the women’s soccer team has not had the opportunity to play any practice games, only routine training. The team must also wear masks when they are in groups or in the weight room. However, Parker reported, “My favorite day [is] Friday because coach would let us scrimmage against each other.”
For the past two weeks, a handful of players have had to quarantine and, in compliance with TJC’s COVID-19 procedures, team practices came to a halt and only a few women were able to stay in their assigned dorms. According to Parker, “COVID is changing a lot of things,” but she believes that she, as well as the rest of the team, are adapting to the situation very well and that TJC has done an amazing job trying to give students “the best experience possible.”
Parker also said that when she pictured living on campus, she didn’t imagine seeing all of the students walking around with masks on, and many students only go outside when necessary (to go to the cafe, practices, class, etc).
Parker explained how COVID-19 has affected her personal experience at TJC.

“The biggest way it’s affected me, though, is in soccer,” Parker said. “I was really excited to come in and practice and play games, but I haven’t been able to do too much of that.”
Parker describes her normal day as a TJC student and athlete as “pretty jam-packed and a bit hectic at times,” but she said, “I wouldn’t change anything about it.” Parker reported that despite the current challenges, she has loved her time at TJC and “the girls have become my second family,” which is enriching her unique college experience even more.
“God has a reason that we are going through this, so we just got to trust him and his plan,” Parker said.

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