While leaving Syracuse and moving back into your bright purple teenage room is not ideal, we all know that staying home is essential during these trying times. Most of us have resorted back to our old ways and are looking for something new. Who says staying home can’t be fun? We spoke to Syracuse students to find out what new hobbies they are exploring in quarantine.


For many families, having a home cooked meal every night is a new norm. Going out to eat or going to a friend’s house, is now off the table. This has led many people to try new things and discover recipes they never would have before. A rising junior in Newhouse majoring in Advertising, Sydney Chilewich, has discovered a new passion for cooking while being stuck at home. She has cooked dishes such as homemade pasta, pizza, as well as sushi. Sydney says, “I’ve always loved cooking, and now I get to do it at home whenever I want. I am a food lover and can finally create my favorite recipes from scratch.” While of course we wish we were back in our dorm rooms, these homemade recipes definitely surpass a frozen meal with a side of cereal.

Tie Dying

We can all admit that staying home has affected our day-to-day fashion looks. “Waist up” business causal anyone? While working from home in sweatpants has always been a great idea in theory, there is something about getting dressed and going to class or work that sparks motivation. With warm weather approaching, and with shopping off the table, students have been finding creative ways to alter their wardrobe. Tie dying an old sweatshirt or T-shirt has become a very popular trend. This is the perfect way to get a new article of clothing and give yourself an activity to keep the boredom at bay. Tie dying can be a great new hobby for anyone because chances are, most of the materials can all be found at home. You can tie dye with just some rubber bands and bleach. There are many DIY videos on YouTube showing how to do this. (Just make sure to use gloves and not mix chemicals/cleaners.)

Re-Decorating or Painting

This is the perfect time to jump into those projects you swore you would do when you “had more time.” Whether it’s cleaning out your garage, or re-painting that bright purple childhood bedroom, there is no better time than now. Finding ways to feel accomplished while spicing up your home is something many people are taking part in. You may have seen a ton of before and after videos on TikTok. Who knows? The throw pillow you’ve been keeping on the chair in your living room might look so much better on the bench upstairs! Even the most subtle changes around your home can give a brand-new feel.

Learn a New Language

For a lot of us, our screen time has gone up copious amounts since we’ve been in quarantine. But, why not use 20 minutes of that screen time to learn a new language? I’ve recently downloaded Duolingo, and I can honestly say, if the opportunity ever presented itself, I can now order a complete meal in French.  It’s an easy app to use and actually makes learning a foreign language seem enjoyable and doable. Studies have even shown that 34 hours of using Duolingo amounts to 1 university semester of taking a language course. Basically, by allotting an hour everyday for Duolingo, you’d be completing a full semester of Spanish class, for example. With the next school year, many of you will be looking into studying abroad for a semester. This would be the perfect opportunity to practice and improve on the language of the country you’re looking into for study abroad.

All in all, being stuck at home can be challenging, but essential. We know we are doing our part by staying home so that first responders, doctors, and workers can continue being brave and helping each and every one of our communities. It is important to stay healthy mentally and during these times. Finding a new hobby might be what you have been looking for all along!

Written by Ryan Hecker ’22, College of Visual and Performing Arts, and Michelle Velez ’20, S. I. Newhouse School of Public Communications