Senior Marcus Otto Has Been in Strict Quarantine for Over A Year

By Chase Pray

In the midst of a pandemic, every family had to make a very important decision this past summer would they stay virtual or would they decide to come back in person with a bigger risk of being exposed to COVID-19. Senior Marcus Otto experienced this drastic choice firsthand. Due to having a weakened immune system, Otto had to keep himself safe and stay at home this school year. For Otto, choosing between online and in person school was clear, he either put himself in danger or he stayed in the comfort of his home.

“Because I take certain medicines, my immune system is a bit weaker meaning COVID-19 would likely affect me more than others. If I went it would be incredibly irresponsible of me to go to school when I have all the required resources at home. I also don’t want to put those who can only do in person school in any more danger then needed,” Otto explained.

Starting in March of 2020, Otto has had the misfortune of being stuck in mainly just his home for nearly a year. Luckily for the Ottos, no member of their direct family has had COVID since the pandemic began. With no risk of getting COVID-19 through a computer screen, online school was great for Otto. Even though he wasn’t able to see his friends in person, Otto was lucky to be able to see all his friends everyday in a box on a computer screen. His girlfriend Emma Rohrbach and brother Jackson both are taking online school along with Marcus. With

Otto and Rohrbach both leaving for college next year getting to see each other in some sort of capacity is one up from their down of a year.

“Quarantining has affected us positively and negatively, because we of course, miss our friends and socializing with others. However, we get to spend some time with our family members before we go off to college. I was also personally able to truly re-examine my life and make some big decisions,” Rohrbach said.

One of the biggest questions in person students have for online students is just how difficult online school really is and how it feels being stuck at home nearly 24/7. According to Otto, it really depends on the class but it’s really important that you manage your stress level according to Otto. Planning ahead of time and having a schedule for your work helps immensely for students online. Online students must remember they can do their work when they want but if they fall behind it may be difficult to catch themselves back up.

“I just keep doing my work by the time it’s due and I’m doing just fine. It’s really cool having the comfort of my own home when I’m online so I can just relax and do my assignments on time or ahead of time and I’m sure I’ll keep doing just fine. Personally I sure hope I won’t be returning to North in person, however I’m looking forward to going to college this summer and taking new classes while I meet new people,” Otto said.