Sac State is buzzing again with the ‘closest thing to normal college life’

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SACRAMENTO — Although classes begin next week for Sacramento State, the campus is already buzzing with students.

Thursday marked the first day of moving in.

The return not only marks the start of a new academic year, but the university believes it signals a return to what comes closest to normal university life before the pandemic.

Before the first day of school, officials expect 3,200 students to move into residence halls.

Stage fright is already there for some.

“I don’t know what to expect. But I’m just excited to meet someone new,” said Natalie Diaz, 18, a freshman who wants to major in biology.

There is a waiting list of approximately 200 students looking for accommodation on campus. As for enrolled students, approximately 31,000 are enrolled in fall classes

The eagerness to resume in-person learning after the pandemic goes all the way to the top of the university. It’s not another school year, it’s the academic year, according to university president Robert S. Nelsen.

“We’re finally back together and now we have 80% of our classes face-to-face,” he said.

Through this excitement, there is caution. All returning students are vaccinated or exempted and new students must present a negative COVID-19 test prior to move-in day.

These safeguards reassure families like the Huitrons.

“I’m so excited for them to have this experience,” said Elsa Huitron, mother of Sac State freshman Daniella. The day is noticeably different than when she helped her son move into on-campus accommodation in 2020 at another university.

She is excited but anxious.

When asked if she or her daughter would be the first to call the other person, Elsa Huitron didn’t hesitate.

“It will probably be me,” she said. “She’s a much improved version of us.”

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