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Students react to Cal Poly's response to coronavirus

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Posted at 12:03 AM, Mar 13, 2020

Cal Poly announced that Spring break will be extended by a week to help staff prepare for the possibility of online classes, but that for now in-person final exams will still happen next week.

Students say there's been growing concern around campus and questions as to what the future of the school year holds. Students received an email and video update Thursday from university president Jeffrey Armstrong.

"The advice of our own experts and county officials is that we continue with operations essential to students success as planned," said Armstrong.

The university's response about how they plan to handle the coronavirus has prompted some concerns from students.

"Up until today, it was kind of being downplayed; no one was really worried, but today it kind of sunk in for everyone," said Gavin Abraham, a Cal Poly student. "Especially after the [video] came out from the university, and people are starting to worry that it's a real threat."

Fears of the coronavirus are even affecting life in the dorms for some Cal Poly students.

"It's pretty worrying," said Mayuri Prisad, a Cal Poly student. "People are definitely trying to keep as high of hygiene as possible, but it definitely gets a little bit iffy at times, so we're all a little bit worried."

"A lot of people are really worried and it's pretty much the talk of the dorms," said Cal Poly student Culley Woods.

As classes are set to meet in person for the remainder of the winter quarter, President Armstrong says the San Luis Obispo County Department of Public Health has advised that transmission of the virus is very low--and without any confirmed cases in the county, in-person finals was the right move.

"We believe proceeding as planned through the end of the quarter maximizes student's success while putting safety first," said Armstrong.

As students get ready for their now two week spring break, students say they're leaving with questions as to what the rest of the school year holds.

"I don't think they're necessarily handling it right but on the other side I don't think necessarily making classes online would really help either, because that kind of defeats the whole purpose of the university," said Abraham.

Cal Poly has set March 25th as the date where students will find out whether classes will be online and whether students who have left for spring break should return to the area.