Marianna Rollins, '22

No One to Lean On: The Struggles of Young Adults to Cope with a COVID-19 World

My project explores the effects of COVID-19 and the accompanying quarantine and life changes on the overall mental-health of young adults. By interviewing young college-age adults (current students, graduates, and full-time employed) I will be able to compile first-hand accounts of the struggles experienced around young people’s loss of independence, their experiences returning home to live as young adults, the loneliness and isolation felt during quarantine, and the ways young adults are coping as they try to move forward in their lives. The interviews will shed light on the fears that young adults have about their future career prospects, their difficulties entering a job market ravished by the pandemic, and their sense of living in a world suddenly far less secure than what they had expected. By focusing on questions dealing with family tensions, struggles with online learning, separation from friends, lack of mental-health resources, and work and family obligations during the pandemic, I hope to be able to preserve the narratives of not only HC students, but also international contacts. I will be framing these accounts around scholarly works published analyzing factors that contribute to poor mental health of young adults, as well as an interview with Ellery Woo, from the HC counseling office.