Saint Joseph’s College in Standish has ordered students to “study in place” after nine people tested positive for the coronavirus there.
The college’s president, Jim Dlugos, said Sunday in a message to the campus community that the coronavirus outbreak isn’t “widespread” and that the infected students belonged to “the same connected group.”
But to halt further spread of the virus, Dlugos said students will “study in place” over the next couple weeks as the college takes other precautions. That includes students staying in their rooms “as much as possible.”
“We know this will be difficult, but both the College and the CDC view this as a necessary step that will give us the space we need to stop the spread of the virus,” Dlugos said.
Classes will be held remotely, with on-campus students attending from their dorms and commuter students from their off-campus residences.
Students can leave their dorms to get to-go meals from dining halls. While many common areas will be closed, students can meet outdoors with no more than one other student while wearing face coverings and maintaining social distance. The campus will be effectively closed to visitors.
Dlugos said that Saint Joseph’s will begin testing every student for the coronavirus. Students who test positive will remain in isolation for 10 days, while those quarantining for 14 days during contact tracing will, for the most part, do so off campus.
Despite the restrictions and effective closing of Saint Joseph’s campus, Dlugos cautioned students against returning home, calling the college a “safer place than many other communities at this time.”
“We are Monks. We’re going to get through this together,” Dlugos said.