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Coronavirus in colleges: tracking the numbers at Mid-Michigan universities

Published: Sep. 7, 2020 at 10:55 PM EDT
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FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) (09/07/2020)-The school safety question continues to loom large as several states begin to see their case counts spike. A recent New York Times survey showed Michigan ranked near the middle in terms of how states are faring, with under a thousand college-related cases diagnosed, but, as the data shows, there are still problem spots.

“They’re putting a lot of trust in us to make the right decisions.”

Sophomores Ben Siekierski and Maalik Houston can’t take their health for granted. Both play baseball at Northwood. ABC 12 asked them whether they felt safe on campus as the University’s case count hovered just over a dozen Monday.

“We want to have a season, so we’re going to do what we can to ensure that happens,” related Siekierski. “Do what you can to stop the spread.”

“It’s on my mind,” said Houston. “Coming from Indianapolis, where it was a hotspot early on.”

A comprehensive New York Times analysis of 1500 colleges and universities nationwide revealed at least 50-thousand cases and more than 50 deaths that had spread among just over one thousand schools since students returned to campus.

“Students are going to be coming back from all over the state, all over the country, bringing this disease with them into our community,”

That was Central Michigan 5th year Emily Jones last week – as she and fellow students statewide formed a coalition to call for an end to in-person classes at Michigan’s public universities.

“I think the goal for us is to have our administrations listen to us,” explained Jones.

Signs like these began to pop up across campus – as the University confirmed its case count had surpassed 180. University administrators made it clear instruction would remain in-person – barring any major outbreak.

Saginaw Valley State University, meanwhile, had reported 16 cases as of September fourth and listed one student as quarantined on campus.

Alma College reported four cases and four recoveries.

While U of M Flint doesn’t have case information available online, the University did confirm its first infection on the first day classes resumed.

“We know how to be responsible, be safe,” explained Siekierski.

Siekierski and Houston want to stay on campus but say it will take personal responsibility to keep it that way.

“I’m happy to be back,” related Houston. “Hopefully we can stay.”

Copyright 2020 WJRT. All rights reserved.

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