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When the University announced that all undergraduates “who are able” would have to return home, thousands of Princeton seniors saw their academic careers cut short. In one day, the traditions that encapsulate a senior year at Princeton — theses, “post-thesis life,” graduation, the walk through FitzRandolph Gate — were all thrown into question.
As I returned home last week, Arkansas public schools announced they would close amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Almost immediately, high school classmates and community members posted on Facebook that they would be available to babysit kids whose parents couldn’t access child care. I even mentioned to my mother that I would like to do the same, because I knew the schools closing would wreak a devastating blow on parents who cannot afford to take time off from work.
Two additional cases of COVID-19 have been identified in Princeton, including the first case not to be linked to the Feb. 29 house party where multiple attendees were exposed to the virus.
A Princeton Public School District employee has tested positive for COVID-19, according to a press release issued by the Princeton Health Department on March 19.
On March 20, the Alumni Engagement office announced that 2020 Reunions, originally scheduled for May 28–31, have been canceled due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The same announcement stated the University has not made a decision regarding Commencement activities for the Class of 2020, set to take place after Reunions.
Room draw has been pushed back two weeks, according to a new schedule announced on Wednesday.
Six Bridge Year students are struggling to return from abroad, currently stuck in Urubamba, Peru.
In an online petition that had garnered 352 student signatures as of Thursday afternoon, Princeton Graduate Students United (PGSU) urged the University to “make sure that no one is left behind” as the University responds to the COVID-19 pandemic.
All undergraduate students will be allotted unlimited P/D/Fs for the 2020 spring semester, according to an email sent to the campus community by Dean of the College Jill Dolan.
This week, department chairs and representatives informed seniors that all undergraduate lab research, including work done for senior theses, had been suspended. Students who had previously petitioned to remain on campus solely to continue thesis work were told they would have to return home.
Two more University staff members have tested positive for COVID-19, with at least two staff members and two students awaiting results for pending tests.
On Tuesday, March 17, the University announced that the student quarantined and tested for COVID-19 in McCosh Health Center has tested negative for the virus.
The Daily Princetonian is tracking all confirmed COVID-19 cases in New Jersey,
with particular attention paid to the University and the municipality of Princeton. See a timeline of our full coverage
Gov. Phil Murphy has recommended a statewide curfew, closed restaurants, and ordered the closure of all New Jersey schools.
On Sunday, a third University staff member tested positive for COVID-19, according to an exclusive statement to The Daily Princetonian from Deputy University Spokesperson Mike Hotchkiss.
When the University announced on Wednesday evening that all undergraduates “who are able” would have to return home for the rest of the semester, an exception was made for students who “must conduct lab or other Princeton-based research on campus” for their senior theses.
The University mandated that all undergraduates studying abroad “return to their permanent residence by March 23” in an email to the affected students on Saturday. The policy shift comes amidst rising concerns about the impact of COVID-19 across the globe and the University’s recent decision to conduct undergraduate classes remotely for the duration of the spring semester.
Last week, this Board called on the University to reevaluate the weight given to midterm exams, in light of uncertainty and anxiety surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. The editorial was one among several calls for action, including a widely-supported student petition. The University promptly responded to these concerns, asking professors to consider adjusting “expectations and procedures for mid-terms.”
The second of the two University staff members under self-isolation after potential exposure to COVID-19 has now tested positive, according to an updated statement on the University website Saturday afternoon.
In an email to the student body sent at 5:56 p.m. on Friday afternoon, the Office of the Dean of Undergraduate Students (ODUS) wrote that “continued violations of University health and safety guidelines and University policy may result in disciplinary consequences.”