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Loyola University Maryland switches to online-only classes this fall due to coronavirus pandemic

Loyola University Maryland shelved plans to reopen its campus and instead will only offer online classes.
Loyola University Maryland shelved plans to reopen its campus and instead will only offer online classes. (Baltimore Sun photo by Lloyd Fox)

Joining a growing group of colleges to keep their campuses closed due to the coronavirus pandemic, Loyola University Maryland said Thursday that it will offer solely online classes this fall.

Last week, Goucher College similarly decided to reverse plans to reopen its campus. Other Baltimore-area colleges currently plan a hybrid approach, with most of their courses taught either partly or fully online. They have also canceled some sporting events and other large gatherings, developed testing and contact tracing protocols and modified dormitories, dining halls and other campuses to reduce interactions.

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Loyola’s president, the Rev. Brian F. Linnane, cited rising numbers of COVID-19 cases, the availability of testing and the turnaround times for results as contributing to the decision. Expectations of the virus dying down over the summer did not materialize, he said.

“That transition would have given us the opportunity to open the University as scheduled,” Linnane said. “Unfortunately, the data have proven that did not happen.”

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The Chronicle of Higher Education has found that fewer than half of the 1,260 colleges it has been tracking are opening their campuses this fall.

Loyola said it plans “a full residential and academic experience” for the spring 2021 semester.

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