As the spring 2021 semester comes to a close, Fordham prepares for an in-person fall 2021 semester on the condition that all students are vaccinated. (JILL RICE)
As the spring 2021 semester comes to a close, Fordham prepares for an in-person fall 2021 semester on the condition that all students are vaccinated.


A Year of COVID-19 at Fordham in Photos

May 21, 2021

The year since March 2020 has sometimes seemed like a lifetime, and these photos depict the many changes to the lives of students and New Yorkers throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

From the time when people hoped the virus would last a few weeks through the most recent in-person commencement over a year after the pandemic began, everyone has had to adjust to living virtually and wearing masks. Scroll through the photos below to see some of the COVID-19 pandemics effects on Fordham chronologically.

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  • On March 13, 2020, Fordham suspends all face-to-face classes through the end of the semester.

  • Gov. Cuomo declares “PAUSE” executive order on March 20, urging New Yorkers to stay home to mitigate the spread of the virus. Only two days later, the WHO declares New York City as the “global epicenter” of the pandemic.

  • Residents are told to vacate residential halls by March 20.

  • A McMahon Hall security guard watches over the emptying dorm rooms and hallways on campus.

  • Students adjust to online learning from home made difficult by their adorable pets.

  • Stove’s and other clubs navigate to Zoom for meetings and events.


  • On May 16, 2020, the Class of 2020 celebrates the end of their undergraduate careers during a livestreamed virtual commencement ceremony.

  • Graduating students begin their job search and interviews online.

  • New Yorkers spread messages of support and gratitude for frontline workers.

  • Some students joined New Yorkers in Times Square during the BLM protests over the summer.

  • Fordham begins COVID-19 testing prior to the start of the fall 2020 semester on both campuses for all Fordham students and staff.

  • The hybrid fall semester began on Aug. 23 with the implementation of VitalCheck on campus.

  • New Yorkers in Washington Square Park celebrate the tentative presidential victory of Joe Biden on Nov. 7. The celebration comes after days of marches and protests around the city while the election results were still being counted.

  • Fordham hosts its annual tree lighting ceremony prior to Thanksgiving since in-person classes ended on Nov. 24.

  • Fordham students begin their third semester in the hybrid and virtual modalities. Visual arts students continue to adapt to the challenges of learning from home.

  • On Feb. 19, Fordham’s Black History Month Committee hosted a hybrid paint night. The hybrid semesters allowed for more events to be held in-person.

  • Dr. Anthony Fauci urged Americans to wear two masks to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 variants. The U.K. variant was found at the Rose Hill campus on Feb. 24.

  • On April 8, University Health Services began administering the Moderna vaccine to the Fordham community.

  • Fordham held both virtual and in-person commencement ceremonies for the Class of 2021 with COVID-19 precautions in place.

  • As the spring 2021 semester comes to a close, Fordham prepares for an in-person fall 2021 semester on the condition that all students are vaccinated.

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About the Contributors

Andrew Dressner, FCLC ’23, is the photo editor for The Observer and is majoring in natural science on the pre-med track. Outside of The Observer, Andrew loves taking photos, is an EMT and enjoys rock climbing.

GABE SAMANDI, News Editor Emeritus

Gabe Samandi, Fordham College at Lincoln Center ’22, served as a news editor for The Fordham Observer in 2019. Starting as a freshman reporter covering race, economics and student organizations, Gabe worked for two years at the Observer’s News desk.

Following his study abroad in South Africa, which coincided with Fordham’s 2020 shutdown to a digital campus, he left his E-Board position to specialize on stories about racism, culture and inequality - and to practice his photography. Gabe Samandi is majoring in international studies and is a native of San Antonio, Texas.

IZZI DUPREY, Online Editor Emerita

Izzi Duprey, Fordham College at Lincoln Center ’20, is the online editor emerita for The Observer and has been a part of the paper since her freshman year. She is an English major with a communications minor. Her goal is to stay in New York City after graduation and to have an apartment with an exposed brick wall or spiral staircase.

MAGGIE MCNAMARA, Assistant Sports & Health Editor

Maggie McNamara, FCLC ’23, is an assistant editor for the sports & health section and is majoring in English and French. Some of her interests include female athletics and plant-based nutrition. Originally from North Carolina, she can be found powerlifting at the West Side Y, obsessively reading the NYT cooking section or daydreaming about tomato season.


Andrew Beecher, Gabelli School of Business ’21, is the online editor, photo editor emeritus and occasional writer for The Observer. He is a global business major concentrating in consumer insights with a minor in anthropology. If he's not staring at The Observer website, he's probably off canoeing, climbing or hiking somewhere with his dogs, unless there’s a Buffalo Bills or Sabres game on. His dogs’ names are Stella and Stanley, and both are his favorite.

ESMÉ BLEECKER-ADAMS, Fun & Games Editor and Assistant Photo Editor

Esmé Bleecker-Adams, FCLC ’21, is a visual arts major and (oh-so-jaded) New Yorker who is incredibly grateful for her time at The Observer and for all the lovely people she has met there! Favorite hobbies include sewing, playing table tennis and ignoring her alarm clock.

LARA FOLEY, Layout Editor

Lara Foley, Fordham College at Lincoln Center ’22, currently serves as a layout editor. She studies new media and digital design and loves to doodle. She adores working alongside her fellow layout editors and conquering the labyrinth that is InDesign! She has two cats and a doggo back home in Los Angeles.


Alyssa Daughdrill, FCLC ’23, is a photo editor for The Observer and is a journalism and visual arts double major. She is on the E-Board for the campus Tae Kwon Do club and enjoys exploring the city with friends, dancing, reading and taking pictures.

JOE KOTTKE, News Editor

Joe Kottke, FCLC ’23, is a news editor at The Observer. They are majoring in journalism and Spanish studies. In addition to writing and reporting, Joe loves to watch anime, re-read their favorite young adult fiction novels and play piano.

ASHLEY YIU, Assistant Photo Editor

Ashley Yiu, GSB ’24, is the assistant photo editor of The Observer, majoring in global business with a concentration in marketing and consumer insights. Outside of taking photos, Ashley loves food tours and walking through art museums without reading the descriptions.

Photo of JILL RICE
JILL RICE, Online Editor

Jill Rice, FCLC ’22, is an online editor for The Observer. She is a classical languages and comparative literature double major, so please direct any ancient language-related questions to her. She enjoys figure skating and reading, but not necessarily at the same time. She was previously a head copy editor.

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