Generation Pandemic is an oral history archive that documents the impact of COVID-19 on young adults in America. It explores how the pandemic has exacerbated tensions intrinsic to young adulthood, highlighting how uncertainty has influenced major life decisions and future plans. Stories reveal generational themes of sudden movement and entrapment, delayed independence, introspection, and attempts at self-realization.

We strive to augment quantitative studies about the pandemic with a record that highlights orality and lived experiences. Most narratives are presented as edited transcripts or audio stories. Regardless of the form, it’s important to note that we played an active and retrospective role in shaping these pieces as interviewers and editors. Our route was informed by demographic data (Social Explorer) in an effort to represent geographically, ethnically, and socioeconomically diverse groups. All final drafts have been approved by our interviewees before publishing.

 Max (left) and Alan are seniors at the University of Pennsylvania studying English and neuroscience respectively. They’ve been close friends since childhood having grown up on the same street outside of Washington DC.

Max and Alan are recent graduates of the University of Pennsylvania. They’ve been close friends since childhood and grew up on the same street outside of Washington, DC. If you have any questions or have a story you’d like to share, reach out at and

Featured Writing

“For these young people, the pandemic has been harsh. Here are their hopes for the future.”
The Washington Post


“Alan Jinich and Max Strickberger have an extraordinary story to tell.” 
- Radio Times (NPR)

“Two college students hear Americans’ stories during the pandemic in cross-country trip.”
- Smart Talk (NPR)

“An archiving and interviewing project like this will be looked at many decades hence.”
- Penn Today

“A stunning online archive of oral histories and photographs that screams to be turned into a National Geographic spread [or] a Discovery Channel documentary.”
- The Philadelphia Citizen

“It’s amazing what these students got people to tell them in Generation Pandemic. Studs Terkel would be proud.”
- Daniel Rubin, Sr. Editor at The Philadelphia Inquirer

“These recordings will stand as a testament to the power of listening and the necessity of preserving marginalized perspectives for posterity.”