Here is the press release:
As part of its ongoing monitoring of positive COVID-19 rates on campus as well as active community cases and local hospital capacity, Liberty University administration announced on Thursday that it is enacting a temporary mitigation period from Aug. 30-Sept. 10.
The university is making adjustments to campus operations during this time, which are designed to dial down opportunities for indoor contact. All residential classes will switch to an online platform and all large indoor gatherings have been suspended during this period.
Additional information on these temporary adjustments are available on Liberty’s COVID-19 Response website.
The modifications are intended to slow the spread of the virus and maintain a safe and healthy campus environment while the institution continues to act responsibly as a community partner in battling the pandemic.
“We are taking the necessary steps and actions to lighten the burden to our medical service providers, the local hospital resources, and to do our part to keep our community safe,” said Keith Anderson, executive director of Liberty’s Student Health Center and Wellness Initiatives. “We understand the severity of the pandemic and desire to act swiftly to ensure the health and safety of our campus. Through collective collaboration with our on-campus partners, Central Virginia Family Physicians (CVFP), and our Liberty University Health & Wellness professionals, we are attending to our asymptomatic and symptomatic campus members as quickly and thoroughly as possible.”
The university will continue to encourage social hygiene practices that aid in reducing the spread of disease, including physical distancing and wearing a mask. The university will also be announcing upcoming free vaccine clinics to be offered on campus.
Anderson said multiple members of the university administration are working to make this a seamless transition, drawing upon the knowledge and experience gained last year during the university’s successful implementation of COVID-19 mitigation strategies. He said during this upcoming temporary mitigation period, the university will continue to monitor positive COVID-19 rates on campus and the surrounding community, review information from the Virginia Department of Health, and make necessary updates as needed.
Additional temporary measures to be undertaken by the university include allowing employees who have worked remotely to return to remote work, adjustments to meal service options such as more outdoor space and takeout, increased capacity for quarantine of positive and symptomatic residential students, and re-introduction of mitigation measures for non-classroom learning environments such as labs and flight training.
Outdoor events, including the Sept. 4 football game against Campbell, will go forward as planned. Liberty’s Williams Stadium will also be used to host the Convocations and Campus Community worship services that are temporarily moved from the indoor Vines Center.
All Liberty community members are asked to visit Liberty.edu/COVID19 for updates, including the different areas of campus life that are impacted and the proper health and safety procedures to follow.
As of earlier today, Liberty had 159 active cases and 492 students, faculty, and staff in quarantine, but this pales in comparison to Cedarville, a much smaller Christian university in Ohio, which has 281 cases (7% of the student body).