Salisbury University has seen an increase in large student gatherings and COVID-19 protocol violations this semester, according to the university’s Public Relations Office.
University of Maryland, College Park recently enacted a sequester-in-place order for its residence halls and shifted all courses online for a week following a spike in cases, which was believed to have been caused by an increase in large student gatherings, per SU’s Public Relations Office.
Tier three, the highest level of SU’s COVID-19 violations, includes “hosting large-scale events off-campus where applicable public health guidance regarding gatherings is not observed.” Those actions are “likely to result in the student’s immediate removal from campus and/or campus housing,” per SU’s Code of Community Standards.
Wight urged the SU campus community to be wary of UMD’s fate and avoid engaging in similar risky behaviors.
“While COVID-19 has taken a mental toll on all of us, please understand that this is not the time to let your guard down by planning or attending large gatherings, failing to physical distance or forgetting to wear your face mask,” Wight said. “On the contrary, new, more contagious variants of the virus mean we must be more diligent than ever in working to help slow its spread.”
SU has identified 12 cases of the virus over nearly 2,000 tests during the past week, leaving the campus with a positivity rate of 0.6%, per the university’s COVID-19 dashboard.
UMD’s sequester-in-place was authorized after the university reported a 1.7% weekly positivity rate, according to the school’s own coronavirus dashboard.
SU is set to begin stricter COVID-19 testing policies next week, with on-campus students required to test once per week and on-campus employees required to test twice per month.
Wight said these harsher protocols are still less strict than the new testing policies required for sister University System of Maryland schools, with some now requiring students to test as frequently as twice per week.
For more information on SU’s testing protocols or to view the latest university COVID-19 test results, visit https://www.salisbury.edu/coronavirus/testing-info.aspx.
By JAKOB TODD
Featured image courtesy of Salisbury University's Public Relations Office.