SDSU COVID-19 Update

by Jadyn Brandt, News Editor

San Diego State University is continuing its efforts to combat cases of the novel coronavirus on campus this semester.

Currently, the university has reported a total of 1,157 cases. Over four hundred of those cases are reported to be students living on-campus, 726 cases are off-campus students and the remaining cases are staff and visitors on the main campus. 

Previously preventative measures by the university included a pause on the few in-person classes still offered this semester as well as the hiring of private security to patrol on campus and in the College Area. 

In a campus-wide email sent Thursday Oct. 8, Vice President for Student Affairs and Campus Diversity J. Luke Wood announced that SDSU has “received numerous reports of alleged COVID-19 policy violations.”

In response to these reports, Wood wrote that the university will continue to enforce COVID-19 guidelines, which includes disciplinary action for individuals found to be violating such guidelines. 

“The Center for Student Rights and Responsibilities will continue to address alleged violations of the Student Code of Conduct, whether the behavior occurs on or off campus,” the email said. “The alleged violations may include instances of students failing to properly wear facial coverings or practice physical distancing, hosting or attending social gatherings, and failing to isolate and quarantine as outlined by public health guidelines.”

According to the email, organizations found to be in violation of the guidelines may face sanctions and individuals who are found to be violating the guidelines may face suspension or even expulsion.

Additionally, in response to the updated guidance recently issued by the California State University Office of the Chancellor which has expanded COVID-19 policy compliance efforts and the university’s enforcement ability off-campus, surveillance has been expanding from only students living on-campus to all students enrolled in in-person courses. 

The email acknowledged that the majority of the SDSU community continues to follow COVID-19 policy but individuals not following policy do pose a high risk to the rest of the community.

“SDSU takes any violation of policy extremely seriously, as each may pose a direct risk to the health of our campus community,” the email said. “In prioritizing the health and safety of the members of our community, the university will continue to address reported individual and student organization behaviors through the student conduct process.”

Since the start of the semester on Aug. 24, there have been over 750 reports of coronavirus violations. Of these reports, 110 are “community notices”. However, after further investigation the university has found that not all 110 reports were correctly reported through the COVID-19 Incident Reporting Form, and some notices were sent to non-SDSU affiliated community members who had been misidentified and reported as students.

“The community notices have been hand-delivered by San Diego State University Police to individual residences within the College Area (off campus) where alleged COVID-19 related misconduct, including gatherings, have been reported,” the university said in a statement. “The community response notices are intended to inform residents that the university has received reported concerns, and to provide specific information about public health practices.”