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Snapshots of academia during a pandemic: Obermann Center discusses COVID-19 with UI scholars

Apr 21, 2020
Lydia Maunz

With her graduation robe hanging behind her on a Zoom call, doctoral candidate Lydia Maunz set about explaining how the COVID-19 pandemic has rendered her work particularly vital and the garment particularly useless. 

"In the scheme of things, I realize that it's not the most devastating thing," Maunz said, reflecting on the cancellation of graduation ceremonies. "But for me, personally, it has been a tremendous not only disappointment but it has been a sense of grief.”

Maunz is one of many faculty and scholars at the UI grappling with the impact of the pandemic on their profession and personal life. With public gatherings effectively banned, the Obermann Center for Advanced Studies is holding a regular web series, called "Pandemic Insights," preserving stories of the impact of a pandemic on educators and scholars like Maunz in eastern Iowa.