‘UAlbany on PAUSE,’ citing COVID case spike

State News

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The University at Albany announced that the school is switching to fully remote instruction starting Tuesday. This “pause” is due to recent increases in COVID cases among students.

“We have decided effective tomorrow, Tuesday, November 10 we will go into full PAUSE,” said UAlbany President Havidan Rodriguez.

Campus housing is remaining open, and on-campus students are expected to remain in their rooms as much as possible. Students who opt to quarantine at home cannot return during the fall semester. Only takeout dining will be available, computer labs are closed, and libraries can only be accessed remotely. No events or gatherings are permitted, and all athletics and recreation are canceled.

“It is clear to us that the responsible thing is to act now to curb the further spread of the virus on campus,” Rodriguez said.

Students must continue to participate in their classes even as they fully migrate online. Tutoring and academic support is still available virtually.

UAlbany conducted surge testing on November 6, yielding a presumed positivity rate of 3.3% out of roughly 3,400 test samples, which works out to about 112 cases. Those students are now under quarantine, either on campus or at home.

Katharine Serio and Ben Quattrociocchi learned about the change in plans Monday morning.

“It’s kind of unsettling, but it is what it is,” Serio said.

“I’m happy we made it this far. It’s just kind of tough having to go home,” Quattrociocchi said.

Both students said the abrupt move to virtual learning came as a shock to them.

“I’m happy we made it this far. It’s just kind of tough having to go home,” Quattrociocchi said.

Students can choose to go home after testing negative for the virus to prevent community spread. They will not be allowed back on campus until the next semester begins, February 1.

Shifting to remote education with this level of presumed infection follows state guidance. The entire SUNY system was already set to end in-person classes after Thanksgiving and wait until February to resume.

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