WVU prepared for fall semester

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — The fall semester at West Virginia Univesity will begin on Wednesday, marking the first face-to-face lessons in Morgantown since the campus shut down because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Freshman, graduate and professional students will have in-person classes as part of the institution’s effort to reduce the spread of the virus. Other students will have to take part in lessons through a blended or virtual approach.

According to West Virginia University, more than 24,000 students and faculty have been tested for the coronavirus, in which 154 people have tested positive. The positive test results consist of four employees and 150 students.

“We’re very excited to have our students back. We want our students here to have the best possible academic experience,” said Maryanne Reed, the university’s provost and vice president of academic affairs.

“We know the circumstances are very challenging for our students, our faculty and community, but we’re committed to doing the right thing and making it work.”

Students and faculty are expected to follow policies related to the pandemic, including social distancing and wearing face coverings in public spaces.

Reed said the institution has done its best to inform students of policies inside campus buildings.

“There are signs telling students where to sit. There are signs telling students where to walk, how to enter buildings, how to leave buildings,” she said.

Students that test positive for the coronavirus will be placed in isolation at their residence or Arnold Apartments, as well as be offered an opportunity to return home to resume their coursework.

“We need to be able to provide instruction to students where they are should they become ill,” Reed noted, “and enable those students to successfully achieve a learning outcome on those courses.”

Classes at the Beckley and Keyser campuses began Aug. 19; the most recent reported positive case at WVU Tech came on Aug. 15, and the most recent positive case at WVU Potomac State College was received by officials on Aug. 20.

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