Breaking down campus concerns about coronavirus

Illustration by Brennan Hernandez

Marisa Martinez, Editor-in-Chief

UPDATED: Monday, March 16 @ 8pm 

The U.S. is in an official state of emergency due to the ever-growing cases of coronavirus. The virus has hit home as Cal State LA has taken student, faculty and staff health into consideration by implementing new mandates this past week. Here’s what we know so far.

 

There are no known cases of coronavirus at Cal State LA

Robert Lopez, Cal State LA’s spokesperson, said in an email to the UT that the Student Health Center is in contact with the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, which is overseeing coronavirus testing. He confirmed that there are no diagnosed cases of coronavirus among university employees or students as of Friday.

 

All campus events are canceled

According to an email sent out by school President William Covino last week, all campus events are canceled. The cancelation period will last through May 31, which is beyond the last days of the spring semester. Commencement is the only event on which a definitive decision has not been made. The email states that Commencement will be addressed “as the situation evolves.”

 

Classes are canceled Monday, March 16, to Thursday, March 19

This period of time, according to a campus-wide email sent by Covino, is to allow professors to transition their curriculum online. The announcement came Wednesday evening as a “preventive measure and based on the guidance of health officials,” according to the email. 

 

Classes will resume Friday, March 20, and will utilize alternative methods of instruction

Professors will be utilizing applications such as Canvas and Zoom to conduct classes starting Friday in light of coronavirus concerns. This method of teaching will continue through April 24. After that, it’s not entirely known if face-to-face classes will resume. In the aforementioned email, Covino said, “As we approach the end of this period, we will re-evaluate the situation.”

 

The Cal State LA campus, and its resources, will remain open; Library not included

Though classes for the following week will be canceled and online instruction starts Friday, the campus, and its resources will remain open — in some cases, with reduced hours of operation. This includes, but is not limited to: open access labs on campus, housing, and the Student Health Center, according to a campus-wide email from Nancy Wada-McKee, vice president for student life. She said in her email the changes taking place at the university are to keep students safe and ”to allow [students] to continue working toward [their] goal of earning a university degree.” 

According to a campus-wide email sent out on Monday, the Cal State LA “Library will be closed until further notice,” starting Tuesday, March 17. During its closure, the library will provide access to its resources, such as individual databases and OneSearch, remotely. 

 

Partial parking permit refunds are available

Students have the opportunity to get a partial refund for their parking permits by submitting an application found on the school’s website. Despite in-person classes being canceled for the time being, parking permits are still required to park on campus.

More information on refunds can be found at http://www.calstatela.edu/parking/refund-schedule-2019-2020

 

All intercollegiate athletic activities are canceled

The California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) officially announced on Thursday that all “intercollegiate athletic activities, including in-person campus recruiting (on and off campus),” are suspended. According to a press release from Cal State LA’s athletic department, this includes “non-CCAA member sports, women’s tennis and beach volleyball.” In addition, the National Collegiate Athletic Association announced in a press release that the remaining winter and spring championships are canceled.

 

Spring break begins March 30 to April 3

Once the university begins online classes on March 20, professors and students have approximately a week to become accustomed to the new method of teaching before spring break approaches. According to Cal State LA’s Health Watch website, the school advises against personal foreign travel during the annual break. The site also said to “exercise caution when traveling domestically.”

 

Cal State LA is just a drop in the ocean that has been shaken by the coronavirus outbreak. Event cancellations, infections among world leaders and celebrities, the closing of schools are some of the ramifications of a virus that has swept the nation and the world at large.

Richard Tzul, managing editor of news for the University Times, contributed to the reporting of this article.