The Pandemic: Global Interviews

The Pandemic: Global Interviews

Maddy Carroll '22, Staff Writer

Over the past few months, the effects of the Coronavirus have spread worldwide. As a Floridian, I know how the virus is making an incredibly negative impact in my state. I was very curious if the virus has affected some of my friends from different countries differently and what they were doing to reduce the spread of the virus. I sent questions to my friends, Juan from Ecuador, Zoya from California, Marium from Egypt and Selma from Denmark, regarding this pandemic. These are their answers. 

How has the Coronavirus affected you and your country as a whole?

Juan – It has been affecting the economy a lot, as well as my community, since we are not able to go outside. In Ecuador, the culture is all about being outside so this quarantine has definitely impacted that.  

Zoya – Coronavirus has greatly affected national and local communities in many ways. It’s caused the world to essentially shut down in a very short amount of time. The economy has been decreasing and stocks are lowering, foreshadowing a recession in the near future.

Selma – The Danish parliament decided two weeks ago to shut down most public services. So, that would be all schools, daycares and most jobs.  Everyone is advised to stay home, and you can be stopped by police if you are in groups of more than 10. Supermarkets are doing everything they can to be safe for everyone. I work in a grocery store, and we have stuff like glass screens at the cashiers, gloves for the customers and stickers on the floor advising people to keep a distance. Around 1,500 people are infected now, and 30 people died. I would say the park parliament is doing very well taking care of the situation

Marium – The government is reacting well to the confirmed cases of the virus, which aren’t that high. But many believe that the government is drastically underscoring the true amount of cases. Schools closed around two weeks ago, and starting a few days ago, they’ve initiated partial lockdown which is a good move from the government. The real issue is the general population isn’t taking these precautions seriously and are taking it as more of a “vacation” and going out. Also, obviously, in fear, people are bulk-buying, which is going to result in shortages. Businesses are closing, too, which is bad for our economy, which was previously booming. 

What are your thoughts on online school?

Juan – Online school is a great way for us to still stay engaged in school while being out. It also is nice because we won’t have to stay in school throughout the summer. 

Zoya – Online school has been working well, and it is necessary to practice social distancing and flatten the curve. However, it is not ideal. We are staring at our screens all day with no change of scenery, and we lack human interaction.

Selma – I think online school is necessary, especially for my age group because we have our final exams in two months, and we would miss a lot of school if it weren’t for online classes.

Marium – Online school has been okay. I’m getting a lot of work to do. And secondly, I’m annoyed that we’re going be charged the same amount as a usual school term (I go to a private school so education isn’t free.).

How long have you been out of school for, and do you think you will be out for the rest of the year?

Juan – This has lasted two weeks so far, but we will be out for a month at least. It is also possible we will be out for the rest of the year.

Zoya – I’ve been out of school since March 13,and our school just announced we won’t start until May 1. I think we might not go back for the rest of the semester.

Selma – I have been out of school for two weeks so far, and the prime minister announced that we will be going back after Easter, but it’s not 100% sure. I think we will be coming back before the end of the year to do the exams. but of course, I’m not certain.

Marium – We’ve been out of school for 12 days now, and it’s been extended until April. My IGCSE exams have been canceled and so have IB exams at my school. Honestly, I doubt we’ll be going back to school because Egypt hasn’t reached the peak of the outbreak yet, so I’d say if there’s any chance we go back it’ll be for the last few weeks of June. 

Are you scared of the Coronavirus? 

Juan – I am not scared of the pandemic because I know I am safe in my house. I really hope this pandemic ends soon though.   

Zoya –  Until recently I wasn’t too scared, but yesterday a 16-year-old died in southern California so that was a bit of a shock. I’m also worried about the older members of my family, and I’m scared about the effects the coronavirus will have on our population, on our economy and on the presidential election.

Selma –  I am not scared of the virus. I am of course aware of the consequences, and therefore I do my part by staying home as much as I can and avoiding physical contact. But, I think that we should all try and see this situation as positive as we can, because that’s, in my opinion, the only way we can go through it, not just as a country but as a world.Marium – I’m scared of being a vector and giving it to family members or friends that could be at risk. But honestly, at this point, I’ve put my faith in God, and I believe that illness is fate, and yes, we can take all the precautions, but if it’s going to come to you, then it will.  At this point, all we can do is pray and take the necessary precautions.

Image courtesy of