Rachel is a communicator and storyteller living in Surrey, BC. She graduated in June 2020 with her BA in Communications (Hons.) and International Studies and now works as the Coordinator of Communications and Engagement at SFU's Surrey Campus, the campus where she started her undergrad degree years before.


Q: How have you had to adapt your home life? What has been easy/hard?

A: The biggest thing I had to adapt in my home life was setting boundaries around work hours. Because of all our devices, it’s so easy to keep working and working well into the evening hours. I typically used my commute as a time to reset and transition into home life. Now that I don’t have a commute, I need to take the time to set boundaries and take simple steps to enforce them, such as setting an alarm to take breaks, shutting down my device during off hours, or logging out of my emails when I do use my device for personal use.


Q: What are you doing for fun?

A: I’ve always listened to podcasts, but I found that with the pandemic I’ve been listening to even more podcasts, which have been a great source of entertainment but also information. My favourites are 99% Invisible, Reveal, Revisionist History, Land of the Giants, Twenty Thousand Hertz, and for all my fellow Office fans, An Oral History of The Office. 


Q: How are you staying connected with family/friends? 

A: Early on in the pandemic, FaceTime was my go-to. I’d have video calls with friends and eventually we’d get really creative with playing games, having “virtual coffee/virtual happy hour” and surprising each other with food orders and having meals together! As the weather and situation improved, we started to have socially distanced picnics at parks and walks around the neighbourhood.


Q: How are you staying active? 

A: I’ve been going on walks around my neighbourhood! Prior to the pandemic, I had no idea how many trails there were. Taking the time to get some fresh air outside has not only been great for keeping active, but also to learn more about my neighbourhood. Aside from that, there are a lot of great workout videos online or on apps for full-body workouts that have been especially useful!


Q: Advice for current SFU students during this time of physical distancing? 

A: Be sure to take breaks away from your screens! It’s become really easy to keep working or stay glued to our screens and devices in this time because everything is so screen/internet-based. Whether it’s spending time with family, taking up a new hobby, or staying active, be sure to give your eyes a break!


Q: Anything else you would like to say? 

A: It's strange times right now, but keep what's most important to you the closest: your loved ones, your health, and your aspirations. We'll get through this together!