Vice President and Dean of Students Sarah Feyerherm attended Monday’s Town Council meeting to update the Council on Washington College’s plans for student attendance during the continuing pandemic.
Students began returning to the campus on Tuesday 19th. Feyerherm told the Council, with 400 students planning to be on campus, 238 off-campus, and 400 staying at home. The return will be staggered over two weeks.
With traditional classrooms closed, all students will attend classes online. Currently, the campus is closed except for deliveries.
Feyerherm states that strict guidelines are in place to prevent large student gatherings both on campus and off-campus. Aside from using the dining hall and exercise outside, campus activities will be limited.
As students return to campus, they will be tested for virus infection. Testing will be ongoing, with each student being tested every two weeks with 24-48 hour lab results from the University of Maryland. The students are expected to quarantine between initial tests.
If an on-campus student tests positive, quarantine and isolation places are available. Off-campus students will be allowed to quarantine at their residence. Weekly testing results will be posted on their website.
A re-evaluation of the safeguards will be made in late March.
Ward 4 Council Person Meghan Efland asked about concerns the town might have with off-campus housing and how to address them. Feherherm told the Council that any observed behavior concerns should be reported to the town police or directly to her office.
Mayor Cerino said he would be remiss if he did not air his concern, adding “this is definitely a conundrum for the mayor and council because we obviously want the College to succeed because it is a huge engine for Chestertown educationally, economically and culturally,” but that if guidelines are not met, non-symptomatic students with the virus could unintentionally endanger the more vulnerable in the community.
This video is approximately six minutes in length. More about Washington College may be found here.