First Positive COVID-19 Case on Campus

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Carlos Wyrick/Staff Photographer

A student gets temperature checked before attending classes.

Warren Wilson College kicked off winter break with no positive COVID-19 cases in the first semester, and although this is an impressive feat while being in a worldwide pandemic, the same cannot be said for the start of the second semester. Given the rate of infection and the increasing number of positives nationwide, it is not surprising that the campus has a positive case. 

 On the week of January 24th, the school’s Emergency Response Team notified the school that there were two confirmed cases of the COVID-19 virus on campus. The infected students and those in close contact with them were sent to quarantine. 

“Every school, every city, every county, every state, every nation has tried to contain this virus and has struggled. We are doing everything we can to keep cases to a minimum on campus,” said Justin Gildner, Director of Public Safety, Emergency and Risk Management. “It is important now to stay diligent and not get complacent. We are all having a hard time with COVID fatigue and we need to make sure we do not have a setback due to complacency. We just want to maintain as healthy of a community we possibly can.” 

Due to the fact that there was a positive case on campus, the school will be improving protocols to stay proactive and have more testing for students.

“The plan is to do testing of the students again starting the week of February 8th. After that we are putting a plan in place to do multiple rounds of surveillance testing throughout the semester,” said Gildner. 

At the time of this writing, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper has extended the 10 pm curfew a month longer. Although new cases and hospitalizations have slowly decreased in recent weeks according to the CDC, doctors have discovered two new variant strains of the virus in the region. 

For more information on the protocols that are being implemented on-campus and news on the virus within the campus, visit the COVID dashboard on the Warren Wilson website