Unforgettable: The Year 2020


Hannah Quijas

The year 2020 has only been over for a little over three months, but already we know it’s not one that should be forgotten any time soon.

Robbie Pierce, podcast editor

Hello Sac State students, and students everywhere. My name is Robbie Pierce, and I am the podcast editor at The State Hornet, the student news organization for California State University, Sacramento. And I’m here today to announce a new podcast project that we need your help for.

We want to produce a podcast series chronicling forever the year 2020.


The COVID-19 pandemic.
The burden of essential workers.
A summer of protests for social justice and change.
The election of a lifetime.
Sheltering at home for almost a whole year.
Zoom University.
All of it.


The year 2020 has only been over for a little over three months, but already we know it’s not one that should be forgotten any time soon. History is written by those that survived it, and as not only journalists but as your fellow students, your peers, we want to take this opportunity to document our story the way only we can. 

No matter where you’re from, no matter how the year treated you, we want to hear your story. In your own words.

To participate: in an MP3 recording, state your name, where you’re from, and your answers to as many questions as you like. Then, send it to [email protected].


Isolation, wearing a mask, the weird fear when you watch an old movie and there are crowds of people, the people you’ve missed, the milestones that went uncelebrated. The larger psychological impacts of living through a pandemic.

  1. What has been the single most difficult thing you have dealt with personally during the pandemic?
  2. What do you miss most or what have you missed out on as a result of the pandemic?
  3. What is the first thing you are going to do when things are back to “normal?”



Hundreds of thousands if not millions of people, especially young people, protested across the country to demand justice and change in their communities and nation. If you attended a protest:

  1. What made you decide to attend?
  2. Were you scared for your safety or the safety of those marching with you at any point, whether due to COVID-19, law enforcement retaliation or anything else?
  3. Do you think the summer of protests is going to impact the country meaningfully moving forward? If not, what more needs to be done?



Online learning has been a massive burden to many students and yet a boon for others. How has Zoom University worked or not worked for you?

  1. Has distance learning gotten easier or harder as the pandemic goes on?
  2. What’s the biggest challenge presented by distance learning?/What’s the one thing you dislike the most?
  3. Did it help having advance notice for the fall semester, compared to the mid-semester transition in spring?



Many students filled in as essential workers during the worst of the pandemic, whether to keep bills paid or out of a sense of service to their community. If you worked as an essential worker:

  1. How has your job/role changed since the start of the pandemic?
  2. Were you provided PPE, hazard pay or any other type of support while working?
  3. What was your worst pandemic customer experience been?



Whether it was your first, second or tenth election, 2020 was an incredibly polarized, hyperpartisan and difficult year, with protests for change, an insurrection in favor of monarchy and false claims of ballot fraud capping off the year and starting the next one. 

  1. In your opinion, what has led to the hyperpartisanship we see today?
  2. How do you think social media has influenced politics and what, if anything, do you think should be done in response?
  3. Have events like the summer of protests, the Capitol insurrection and the polarization of the election changed your perspective on politics?