Spring 2021 is the third consecutive semester in which Wake Forest has had its typical on-campus plans thwarted by the global pandemic. While that sentence may sound like something straight out of an episode of The Twilight Zone, it is sadly the reality we live in.
No matter how unfortunate that reality is, however, the students, faculty and staff of this school made a pledge to follow conduct rules and behave in a way that protects not only themselves, but the greater Winston-Salem community.
On Tuesday, Feb. 2, it was reported that there were 98 known, active cases of COVID-19 among the Wake Forest population. With 24 of these cases being reported this Monday and 26 on Tuesday, it is apparent that weekend social gatherings, both at Greek life social events and off-campus bars, are making the spreading of the virus even more rampant.
As the number of coronavirus cases among staff and students grows by the day, the risk of the university entering the red or the purple zone increases. Students, however, should be motivated to make smart decisions regarding mitigating the spread of the virus with the health, safety and well-being of the wider Winston-Salem community in mind, rather than out of fear of the university imposing more stringent restrictions on campus life.
You would be hard-pressed to find one amongst our Wake Forest student body who does not wish life was back to ‘normal.’ But today, life is not ‘normal’ anywhere, for anyone.
Wake Forest’s Honor Code is not a packet of suggestions. It is the cornerstone of this institution and should be regarded as such. As students, we must follow the health recommendations put forward by the university. To disregard them does a disservice to our peers, as well as the faculty and staff who come to work each day, keep our campus alive, and return home each night to families of their own.
Unless students begin to hold themselves and their peers accountable, this spring semester might end just as abruptly as it did last year when COVID-19 first reared its head.
On the 186th anniversary week of Wake Forest University’s founding, let us go forward and promote the spirit of Pro Humanitate — not only in what we say, but what we do.