Residence halls remain open to more than 100 students who were granted exceptions

by Katelynn Robinson, Staff Writer

Approximately 160 San Diego State students continue to live on-campus after students were given one day to move out of residence halls in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The students who continue living on campus are those who were granted exceptions for extenuating circumstances, such as those who could not return home due to travel restrictions or financial troubles.

These students now live in single rooms within apartment units in Piedra del Sol, Granada and M@college, according to Director of Residential Education Kara Bauer.

“All of our students were consolidated,” Bauer said. “So before they came over to Granada and (Piedra del Sola) when they left their other communities, all those rooms were cleaned and those students then moved into those spaces.” 

Dining is still open on campus at UTK, Which Wich, Wings ‘N Things and Plant Power, as some students continue to use their meal plans while others requested refunds. Some students switched to a declining balance, so they would not have to leave their rooms daily to spend their meal plan funds. 

Director of Well-being and Health Promotion Stephanie Waits Galia said programs across campus have come together to provide the remaining campus residents with information surrounding the pandemic.

“We’ve been working to make sure there’s good information out there about what good hygiene practices are as well as some information about social distancing and a breakdown of what the stay-at-home order requires,” Galia said. 

She said campus leaders are working to make sure the students who remain on campus and those now at home have access resources and connections. 

“First day of spring break, for example, we put together a social media kit that had several different options of how students could still enjoy spring break, but while practicing recommended social distancing within their plans, and other ways to manage stress and stay safe and healthy during this time,” Galia said. 

Many campus resources and programs are continuing to host events via zoom. These events include leadership programs, mental health meetings and workout classes through the Aztec Recreation Center. 

Bauer and Galia said they encourage students to share what types of programs they are interested in and what resources they still need. 

“One of the things we are all trying to do is being as responsive to student needs as possible,” Galia said.  

Bauer and Galia also said their offices are still open. 

“Many folks have this perception that campus is closed, which it’s not,” Bauer said. “Many, almost all of us are working remotely. All of our offices are open, they just aren’t open physically on the campus.”