After four weeks of classes, AU has seen 23 total positive COVID-19 cases, a number that many view as on-par with similar universities.
“Based on public information available from other schools, our numbers and policies are very similar to institutions that are close to the same size as AU,” said Maggie Platt, director of residence life and student conduct.
Alma College, a private college in Michigan, is of comparable size to AU and is reporting 21 total positive cases so far this semester.
Platt explained that students and leadership alike can learn from other universities and how they’re handling the circumstances.
“Over the summer, I met regularly with the directors of residence life at several similar institutions in Indiana and Michigan,” said Platt. “We shared ideas and data so that we could protect our students and communities to the very best of our ability.”
According to Platt, the concept of “Floor as Family” was introduced in one of these meetings in an effort to marry safety and relaxation for students.
“A global health crisis isn’t the time for institutional competition, and I have loved our spirit of working together toward the common goal of keeping our campuses safe,” said Platt.
Platt explained that she is pleased with how students are receiving and abiding by the new guidelines.
“While there are instances of non-compliance and risky behaviors, in general our student body is taking this seriously and protecting our community by wearing their masks, distancing and staying away from large gatherings,” said Platt. “I think that’s why we are seeing the current low numbers.”
Platt explained that she hopes students continue following COVID-19 guidelines set in place to keep case numbers to a minimum.
“I am so proud of our students,” said Platt. “My encouragement is to keep it up, stay dedicated to our safety strategies and look for ways to safely connect with friends and classmates. Grab Mocha’s and go for a distanced walk, have a picnic lunch, attend Life Groups and other activities on campus and keep traditions alive, even if you have to modify them. I think this can be an amazing year that we always remember.”
Photo by Nouhad Melki