The Graduate

COVID on Campus: The Graduate

“I still feel a little bit like a Syracuse student” - Crystal Rabizadeh
Published: January 18, 2021


COVID on Campus - Crystal Rabizadeh - The Graduate
Crystal Rabizadeh is back home in California after graduating from Syracuse University early in the pandemic.

After graduation, I moved back home to Los Angeles. I was supposed to go to do a master’s program on borders and security in Northern Ireland. But I deferred it until next year because it had a lot of hands-on learning – that’s the reason I wanted to do the program.

I applied for that program because I thought it would be really cool and fun, but I didn’t know what I would do with it as far as a job. Sitting here and watching everybody work kind of makes me think about jobs. Now I’m studying for the GRE and I’m figuring maybe I can do something that’s more career-boosting and not so fun.

I’ve been applying here and there. I am technically working for my parents, who own a small business, so I’m on payroll right now for them. I’m also still working on two research projects with Syracuse University. They actually hired me back as a part-time staff online.

I still feel a little bit like a Syracuse student because I’m doing all of these projects, working with the people I was working with when I was in school. I definitely feel like I haven’t graduated yet, if that makes sense. I’m still revising parts of my honors thesis, to think about publishing maybe, and I’m still doing those jobs on campus.

I don’t even have any friends here anymore. All of my friends are either still in school, or they’re doing their master’s program somewhere, or they already started their grown-up lives and live somewhere else. It’s like an unpopular 13-year-old me: visiting my boyfriend and just reading all the time.

I’m also watching a lot of movies and a lot of baking. The first three months of the pandemic, I just laid in my bed and took a well-needed rest from college and all the stress that it caused. I went to go visit my doctor to get some vaccines, and my doctor said, “Your blood pressure is way down, what’s going on?” And I said, “I’m not doing anything.”

COVID on Campus

COVID on Campus

This as-told-to interview is part of COVID on Campus, a series created by students in the Reporting classes at the Newhouse School in Fall 2020. COVID on Campus documents the experiences of students, staff, and faculty living through this extraordinary time.

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is a contributor for The NewsHouse.