The University of Maryland will change plans and go to online learning “with very few exceptions” after the Thanksgiving break.
President Daryll J. Pines said in a statement Thursday that he was taking the decision because of a surge in COVID-19 cases nationwide and in the area that would likely only get worse as colder weather led more people to stay indoors, which increases the possibility of transmission.
“Research conducted by our faculty and our colleagues at the University of Maryland, Baltimore, on the impact of climate on infection rates, also suggests that we should expect a continued escalation of COVID-19 cases in our region,” Pines said in the statement.
“All students who elect to travel away from campus for Thanksgiving should plan to remain away for the duration of the semester. Students who choose to remain in residence halls for Thanksgiving may stay in their residence halls until the conclusion of the semester,” he said.
The last day of classes is Dec. 14; exams are set for Dec. 16-22.
Campuswide coronavirus testing will be offered the week before Thanksgiving, Pines added.
“Like many of you, I wish for a return to normalcy for our university, including the full resumption of in-person classes and extracurricular activities,” he said. “Yet this virus continues to demand vigilance, patience and perseverance. I believe the actions outlined above are prudent, data-driven, and in the best interests of our university community.”
Pines didn’t detail any possible exceptions in Thursday’s statement.
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