On March 24, Wake Alert sent an email notifying the community of the first confirmed case of coronavirus (COVID-19) on campus. The student had recently returned from the university-sponsored Concert Choir trip to London and is currently being isolated in a residence hall during recovery.
In addition to the confirmed case, another student on campus has exhibited symptoms of COVID-19 and is being closely monitored while in isolation. The email also noted that other members of the campus community are at risk of contracting COVID-19, as they may have come into contact with the infected individual.
“With increasing numbers of positive COVID-19 cases in North Carolina and around the country, the number of students with COVID-19 on campus may increase as well,” said the email. “The University will continue to follow the guidance of public health officials.”
This follows an email issued on March 21 confirming the first off-campus case of COVID-19, which was also reported by a student who also went on the Concert Choir trip. Since then, other students living off campus have also tested positive for COVID-19.
The university has notified participants on the trip abroad or students on campus who are believed to have been in contact with the infected individual about proper precautions and next steps.
“Continue to practice social distancing per the guidelines of the CDC (Centers for Disease Control)” said the email. “The University will follow recommendations of public health officials and infectious disease experts to further reduce community transmission of the virus.”
To prevent further spread of the highly contagious disease on campus, the university has moved students remaining on campus from doubles into singles. The university is also sending home any students who break any residential rules for living on campus or commit serious infractions.
Other measures taken in accordance with social distancing guidelines include holding online classes and requesting that faculty and staff also work remotely if possible. The university will make a decision by March 30 about whether remote classes will continue for the remainder of the semester and whether anyone will be allowed to return to campus.
“We continue to monitor this rapidly changing situation,” the email said. “The health and wellbeing of our campus community continues to be our highest priority.”