Residence Life opened up lobbies to guests and open-house to same-gendered guests on March 19 and 26, respectfully.
The decision to begin reopening residence halls comes from analyzing decreasing positive COVID-19 cases with current numbers indicating zero positive cases and quarantined people associated with the university.
Shannon Kaczmarek, director of ResLife, said that while ResLife feels like the university is in a position to begin opening up the halls there are still public health protocol being implemented.
“The occupancy limit in the bedrooms is four,” Kaczmarek said. “We keep the requirement of no more than two guests so that it still allows the residents to remain there in that space. It’s not too stringent, but we are trying to keep policy and protocol in a way that is still reflective of public health recommendations.”
ResLife is also telling residents to continue wearing their masks when around guests in the halls.
Although coronavirus numbers are low on campus, Kaczmarek said she doesn’t want to do anything that would put students at risk of getting the virus.
“If we look at our current numbers for positive cases and quarantined people on campus then I think we are in a safe place to do this,” Kaczmarek said, “but the last thing we want is for a student to get exposed and have a serious case because we didn’t do our due diligence.”
Other guidelines including social distancing within the lobbies in an effort to ensure further safety of the students and guests. However, Kaczmarek said this is not going to be as heavily enforced.
“We are still respecting the CDC’s recommendations for physical distancing,” Kaczmarek said. “There are still signs up and giving attention to it and we’re not telling people not to do it, but we are asking students to be respectful of the guidelines.”
Melissa Gant, resident director of Sikes Hall, said that another reason for the changes is to help residents return to a sense of normalcy.
“This is also a great way for us to help our sophomores get back to the normalcy they had last year and to help our freshman be able to experience some normalcy in such a crazy first year of college,” Gant said.