Term VII - The Motivation Awakens


Contrary to the rest of 2020, which has very much been the year equivalent of trudging through the North York Moors in rain and hail, Term 1 of Third Year (or Term 7 overall) has come and gone like COVID-19 itself. Term 7 sprung up on us all, seemingly out of nowhere, even though we had the entirety of summer knowing something was coming; and now just like that it has ended. We can only hope the pandemic will follow suit with its timely departure - fingers crossed.
But on an even brighter side, what a term it has been. The fact all of the modules have been forced into online-only consumption has not been a huge bane as I thought it would. There have been some casualties in the war, sure, with a number of students struggling to adapt to the complete lack of in-person teaching - a prayer for those poor souls, as COVID really has buggered a lot of people in that regard. For the few who can adapt however, or at the very least look past the webcam screen and imagine they are in King’s Manor, we’ve had a pretty good term. I’d wager, anyway. 


I think one major positive to be borne from this current Dark Age we live in is motivation. Never before have my brain cells been trying so hard and so frequently to get work finished to a hopefully high standard; first and second years were just sort-of there, with no real passion or enthusiasm from yours truly. Third year however, even with its online-only existence, has been a non-stop time management bonanza. The fact we are all confined to our fallout shelters now means that I’ve just had a deep desire to try extra hard; dissertations, formatives, summatives, all being completed in advance to what I hope is a decent standard. Times like this - times of resistance - really do push people to become their very best, and I think moving forward these trials and tribulations will stick with some of us.
One way of looking at it is that I am grateful for COVID-19, its certainly pushed me to my academic limits. I would like to say, in the alternate timeline where the Chinese government’s human rights abuses didn’t cause a global pandemic, that I would be just as dedicated to my work as I am now, but I am not so sure. 


Have some food-for-thought anyways, though preferably not from a wet market.

Author information

ah1919@york.ac.uk's picture
Alex Harvey
MA Medieval Archaeology at the University of York | ah1919@york.ac.uk