Coronavirus Update - 4/10/2020
April 10, 2020
In the spirit of keeping everyone informed about how Washington College is responding to the public health threat posed by the novel coronavirus, we write today to thank our buildings and grounds crews who are still at work on campus every day, and the Public Safety team and campus gate crews who are keeping our campus safe. In addition to the assistant coaches, many Dining Hall staff are pinch-hitting by working at the gatehouse, stepping out of their usual roles and comfort zones to accomplish essential functions. Meanwhile, there is no rest for the Enrollment Management team, which is in the height of conversion season, nor for College Advancement, which recently raised more than $117,000 for its COVID-19 Response Fund. And for our faculty and students, it is business as usual—sort of—as they adapt to online instruction.
April is traditionally the busiest month on campus, with students completing senior capstone projects, the sports season in full swing, and a flurry of events that culminate with Commencement ceremonies in May. While the auditorium is dark and Kibler Field is quiet, we are moving forward with virtual renditions of other spring events. Kohl Gallery has launched its 100 PROOF exhibition online (and here for mobile devices); the English Department is organizing a Zoom meeting on May 15 for the annual Sophie Kerr Prize event; and Senior Awards will be presented virtually in a video compilation to be posted on YouTube on May 22. And in case you haven’t heard, Commencement has been rescheduled—on campus—for October 17. We all look forward to that day when we can celebrate the academic accomplishments of our graduating seniors, and the return to some semblance of normalcy.
But for now, we stay close to home, continue to wash our hands, and look out for our families and our neighbors by limiting public outings and maintaining social distancing. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is now strongly recommending that everyone wear cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies), especially in areas of significant community-based transmission.
To learn how to make and safely use a cloth face covering, visit the CDC.
While there are no suspected cases of COVID-19 on the Washington College campus, Kent County now has 10 confirmed cases of COVID-19, and the local hospital is preparing for a possible patient surge. Tents erected outside the Emergency Department at University of Maryland Shore Medical Center may be used for patient evaluation to reduce the possibility of exposure to COVID-19 among patients seeking emergency care.
So, stay vigilant, be well, and continue to check the website for the latest news and information.