As classes are set to open this coming fall, colleges in the United States are struggling to grasp the concept of a “new normal.” The curve of Coronavirus cases is not showing signs of flattening by far. In fact, cases are still emerging every single day. The government insists on reopening, and the schools have no choice but to comply.
New regulations are to be imposed and the typical college experiences will have to be suspended whilst the threat of Covid-19 lingers. Campus dormitories will temporarily prohibit guests. Parties will also be forbidden.
Usual individual safety protocols will be mandated such as wearing of face masks and physical distancing. Implementation will be strict and consequences for violators are serious.
The new system does not seem feasible to critics as it shows that college students are deprived of the actual experiences that come with it. Big universities are expecting many enrollees and returnees. Testing, quarantines, and putting up safety barriers will deem difficult without the students’ cooperation.
There is confidence that students will abide by the rules, but the possibility of rule-breakers still loom over the horizon and handling these students will become a challenge.
Students from Tulane University in New Orleans received a majorly capitalized note from the Dean, Erica Woodley after reports of a summer weekend party reached the office.
“DO NOT HOST PARTIES OR GATHERINGS WITH MORE THAN 15 PEOPLE, INCLUDING THE HOST. IF YOU DO, YOU WILL FACE SUSPENSION OR EXPULSION FROM THE UNIVERSITY,” Woodley wrote.
The administration is bent on keeping a tight grip on student activities to contain the spread of the virus and keep it from infiltrating the campus premises. University of Texas prohibits in and off campus parties. Amherst College in Massachusetts is not allowing students to get out of campus premises unless for valid reasons.
Effectiveness of these rules are yet to be seen. The essence of college lies in the creation of connections with people, socialization, and close proximity residences which are counterproductive to the rules imposed. Some universities will stick to online learning unless a vaccine is distributed.