COVID-19 Community Update – March 17, 2020
Dear Northwest University community member,
I have some good news for you.
- The student who tested positive for the novel coronavirus got tested on March 14 and is now feeling well. I did not receive word about the case until yesterday. The student has been quarantined since March 5 and it is very likely that anyone who might have been infected by that student would have already developed symptoms. The student did not live in the residence halls. Everyone who would likely have had contact with the student has been advised now, so if you haven't received an email, you should relax a little bit. Even so, it is best for all young people to keep a prudential distance from people in higher risk categories if they are not staying very close to home. None of us can know for certain that we have not just picked up the virus from a doorknob or some other surface or from someone we've been in close contact with.
- We are doing a deep cleaning of rooms where the student attended class, including rooms in Argue, Millard, and Rice. If anyone sees a housekeeping or maintenance person wearing personal protective equipment, including a mask, do not be alarmed that they may be sick or that there is a heightened sense of crisis. They are wearing the gear to protect themselves from extended exposure to the cleaning chemicals.
- We have decided to cancel all summer missions trips at this time in order to provide some relief from the uncertainty and free up cash that students were reserving for the trip. If students did fundraising to help with their trip expenses, I recommend asking donors for permission to pass the funds on as a donation to the ministry they were intended to bless. Missionaries will be facing shortages of funds just like we all will. We will continue to communicate about academic trips in a timely, strategic fashion. We expect to make final decisions about academic trips in April.
- We will announce specific refund amounts for room and board by the end of day tomorrow. That notice will go to students only rather than to the whole community.
I wish everyone great success in finishing the semester. Thanks for trying to understand our situation. I hope you perceive our heartfelt desire to be helpful.
Victory is ahead. Let's keep pressing toward it.
Joseph Castleberry, Ed.D.
President, Northwest University