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With the coronavirus changing life as we know it, college campuses across the country have been closed, telling students living within their dorms to pack up and move out with little to no notice. This has been most challenging for students that attend school far from home, as travel bans have limited their ability to obtain help from friends or family members.

Storage facilities across the country stepped up to help, providing college students with specialized pricing and discounts so that they can keep their belongings close to campus for the following semester and focus on getting back home. Mr. Wrilinger*, one of the storage facility owners we had spoken to in Akron, OH, stated that he felt terrible for the students having to leave, especially those who are from out of state and out of the country. He knew he had to step in. “We offered them 3 months rent at 50% off. Most of the students paired up when renting a unit, so the price was real cheap.” He said that some even provided boxes at no additional cost.

“I don’t know what I would have done without being able to rent storage close to campus” said Jamal Jones*, a sophomore at University of Akron. “I am glad I didn’t have to worry about getting my stuff all the way back to Indiana. Now I just have to figure out a way to get myself there.”

Storage Seeker provides students with the opportunity to compare and reserve units online for free, with move-in specials for new renters. “We just want to be of help,” said Mr. Wrilinger. “I can’t imagine being in the position they’re in. Some of the students I had spoken to now have to navigate their visas!”

Covid-19 has taken the world by storm, with non-essential retail closing, bars and restaurants shutting their doors, schools closed, and groups of 10 or more prohibited. Travel has been banned, and people have been told to stay in their homes, limiting contact with anyone other than those they live with. They can’t even visit family or friends that reside nearby.

Though the news continues to change, Dr. Anthony Fauci, one of the lead scientists behind the Trump administration’s coronavirus response, said that, “…disruptions to everyday life in the U.S. could last up to eight weeks.” As of now, cases are above 300,000 worldwide, with significant increases each day.

While we are all hopeful that this crisis ends soon, it is important that we follow the guidelines provided to us by the Centers for Disease Control:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing; going to the bathroom; and before eating or preparing food.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a clean tissue, then dispose of the dirty tissue promptly within a trash receptacle.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth, especially with unwashed hands.
  • Stay home when you are sick and also practice social distancing while you are healthy as well.

“This all just feels like one bad dream” said Jamal. That it does, Jamal.

The University of Akron has moved all of their courses online. There is no word yet as to if students will be reimbursed for part of their tuition. 

In the words of Presidential Candidate, and former Vice President, Joe Biden, “We didn’t crumble after 9/11. We didn’t falter after the Boston Marathon. But we’re America. Americans will never, ever stand down. We endure. We overcome. We own the finish line.” We will get through this, stronger and better than before.

Stay safe and healthy.

*Names changed per request.