University Of Oklahoma Welcomes Back Students Amid Pandemic

Monday, August 24th 2020, 5:32 pm
By: Hunter McKee

Classes began on the University of Oklahoma's campus on Monday. 

As students and faculty are asked to take COVID-19 precautions, the university has been testing those living in campus housing.

School officials held pre-arrival student housing COVID-19 testing. So far, 62 tested positive out of the more than 4,500 students who received their results. Some students said they’re skeptical of returning to campus.

“I personally would have preferred distance learning just because I feel more comfortable in my own home especially during a pandemic,” said Hellen Ombachi, an OU student.

Others said they're not worried.

“Because everyone I’ve seen today has been following the mask policy,” said an OU student. “Even the classes that are in-person, everyone's six feet apart.”

OU announced one student did test positive in the dorms.

A university spokesperson released the following statement:

"The individual is in self-isolation and our contact tracing system is in motion. All those who have had direct contact with the individual will be notified."

The school said students who test positive before arriving on campus have to stay home until they're cleared by health officials. About 237 students are still waiting for their results.

“It's definitely a thing that should be taken seriously,” said Ombachi. “I would hope that everybody takes precautions and doing social distancing and wearing their mask but at the end of the day we don't know who's taking it seriously and who's not.”

University officials said they're closely monitoring COVID-19 data and are developing an online dashboard which is set to launch this week.