At a recent SGA meeting, Dean of Campus Life Joe DiChristina stated that, according to an article submitted to the Tripod, “the college intends to finish the spring semester.” This statement is vastly different from what is portrayed by some members of the faculty. Tomorrow, a class I am in will be conducted in a “trial run” completely online, to prepare for the event of a campus closure. Students have been advised to bring all their books with them if they are headed home over the spring break.
In the wake of the coronavirus, it is, of course, difficult to convey information in a constantly changing world. States, such as next door New York, have declared a state of emergency. There is a great deal of uncertainty on campus, and even fear, as a recent letter to the community suggested. Trinity has taken significant and important steps to address concerns.
Over the weekend, the University of New Haven has canceled all classes and midterm exams and mandated that all students must vacate dorms until Mar. 24. According to University of New Haven President Steven Kaplan, as reported by WFSB, one or more students attended an out-of-state conference where a participant was tested positive for the coronavirus. This statement from the University of New Haven reads similarly to the one Dean DiChristina recently released to students, detailing that seven students had been quarantined after possible exposure to the coronavirus after attending an off-campus event.
In Connecticut, the second case of Coronavirus has been confirmed. In Hartford, the Connecticut Capitol’s Legislative Building has canceled all non-legislative functions (as reported by the CT Mirror) and has begun an intensive, four-day cleaning of the building. Trinity maintains a popular legislative internship program for students that utilizes the resources of the Capitol each semester. How will Trinity address this relationship in light of the closure?
Coronavirus is a polarizing topic at Trinity and around the world. Is Trump doing enough? Is the media over-hyping everything? But the real question on everyone’s mind seems to be are we ending the semester early? Will Commencement and other large gatherings still be on Trinity’s calendar? Knowledge surrounding coronavirus and the rules of quarantine, particularly at Trinity, are spotty. For all the advancements the College has made toward informing the community regarding the virus, with the SGA being informed that the semester would continue as planned, the fundamental question of what exactly to pack home for spring break must be answered.