As college students begin to return to campuses across the nation for the fall semester, concerns are heightened as to the still current coronavirus pandemic. Those concerns were even more evident at the University of Connecticut this week.
Several students at the college were subsequently kicked out of their dorms when videos posted to social media showed them gathered in a large party crowd, without masks and failing to social distance.
So far, most of the UConn students have been reportedly cooperating with the health and safety guidelines set down by the institution since returning to the campus last Friday. But, as evident in the social media video post, there are those who are not so cooperative.
In a letter sent to the campus community this past Wednesday, the president of the university said: “Many of you are aware of a party in the residence hall that violated our health and safety rules. As a result, the students involved have been removed from campus housing.”
He went on to say that over that same weekend, seven students were cited for having violated minor infractions.
Even taking the party into consideration, it seems, for now, that UConn has a handle on the spreading of coronavirus on their campus. With 5,042 students in residence having officially tested, only eight showing positive with COVID-19 has been reported—that is a positivity rate of 16%.
As for other positives, two commuters from off-campus tested positive, and as for staff members, of 2,110 tested, only two came back positive—this being a .01% positivity rate.
This is significant compared to other universities in the nation who are not fairing quite as well. Many, who had just started back to the fall 2020 semester have already had to send students home, due to the inability to adequately control the spread of the virus on their campuses.
For instance, at the Chapel Hill University of North Carolina, after just one week of classes in-person, there was a jump of 2.8% to 13.6% in reported test positives for COVID-19. As such, the university decided to shift the learning dynamic to that of remote learning for the remainder of the fall semester.
In a statement made by the World Health Organization (WHO) this week, it has been determined that the coronavirus is now being spread primarily by young adults: "The pandemic is changing: people in their 20s, 30s, and 40s are increasingly driving its spread."
Is this the future of higher learning—education provided remotely rather than on campus?