UPDATE: 89 students and one employee have now tested positive for COVID-19. For the latest updates, Click Here.
BLOOMSBURG, COLUMBIA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) — Just three days into the fall semester and a local university is already dealing with COVID-19 on campus.
One student and an employee have tested positive at Bloomsburg University, officials confirmed on Wednesday. Now, some on campus fear their return to classes won’t last long.
“I really hope that they don’t shut down the campus since I just moved all my stuff into my dorm and I hope nobody else gets sick,” Kaitlyn Lokuta, a sophomore at Bloomsburg University told Eyewitness News.
Shutting down the campus has become a real worry as students received an email notifying them that a student had tested positive for COVID-19 on Monday. An employee also tested positive the previous Friday.
“It was like, wow,” William Martin, a junior said. “They are taking the precautions and people are still getting it.”
University officials say they are continuing to follow CDC and state guidelines as they proceed with the school year. A majority of classes are online and housing is wider spread. Maintenance workers are keeping up with sanitation and signs reminding people that masks are required on campus are spread throughout the grounds.
“If someone’s not going to follow the protocols when they are off our campus, there’s not much we can do,” Tom McGuire, Director of Media Relations and Content Strategy said. “But we are urging everybody to be good neighbors.”
Eyewitness News visited the campus on Wednesday and saw all the students walking around wearing masks, focused on not reverting to a virtual college experience.
“Everybody loves being on campus. So I feel like everybody is still going to do what they have to do to stay up here,” Martin said.
Students remain hopeful that if everyone continues wearing masks and following the protocols, they’ll still be able to have a safe and enjoyable year on campus.
Meanwhile, the student who tested positive was instructed to self-quarantine for 10 days. The university also sanitized all the areas that student visited.
“As the university proactively monitors the entire campus community, it continues to collaborate and coordinate with Geisinger Health, the Columbia County Department of Health, and the Pennsylvania Department of Health,” officials wrote in a press release.
Bloomsburg University will release no further details regarding the identity of the individual.