Yukon student leading lonely life on campus during the pandemic

A student in Whitehorse from a community 600 km away is leading a lonely life on campus after the territorial government warned against travelling home.

Marshall Jonas is a member of the Trondek H’wichin First Nation and is studying at Yukon College.

He still lives on campus but has no where to go.

Jonas used to put all his efforts into his studies but now faces new challenges.

“I’ve been, you know, doing the whole hand sanitizing thing washing my hands my hands frequently, keeping my distance from people, not really touching things, not like too much personal stuff, nothing like that,” he said.

He says life at the college is an isolating experience.

“I’d say that’s a big part of the whole thing, is just mentally trying to be strong for it,” he said.

Jonas said he understands why he can’t travel back to his family in Dawson and needs to stay away at this time.

“My father, he’s like someone that is susceptible to catching the corona the virus,” he said. “So I don’t really want to bring it home to my family.”

With the shutdown of schools and most businesses, Jonas has almost no opportunities to interact with his peers.

“I guess the thing is, I miss most about before the outbreak was you know the social the whole thing, hanging with your friends hanging with your dorm mates and taking it easy or you know just yeah getting ready to go out on the weekend like you know going down town,” he said.

“It was nice being able to go to restaurants or bars with your friends to restaurants.”

As officials try to get control of the pandemic, Jonas turns to a simpler way to spend his time by walking the trails or going for a drive.

If all goes well, he will finish his studies next summer.

Until then, he’ll continue to live the lonely life of a student on campus during a pandemic.

Reporter / Whitehorse

Chris was born in Toronto but has lived all over Canada. He moved to the Yukon in 2009 where he lived and worked in Dawson City. Chris’s background is in radio broadcasting and he has worked with CFYT 106.9, CBC Yukon, and CHON FM as a host and show producer. Chris joined APTN News in May.