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McDaniel College announces move to online classes after spring break in response to coronavirus

McDaniel College announced Wednesday that all instruction will be moved online for two weeks after spring break out of “an abundance of caution” to prevent spread of the coronavirus that causes the COVID-19 disease.

The last day of face-to-face classes before spring break will be Friday. Residence halls will close at 5 p.m. on Sunday, and classes will resume — but in an online format — on March 23.

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McDaniel has no reported cases of COVID-19, according to an email sent to the college community. There are no confirmed cases in Carroll County as of Wednesday evening, according to Maggie Kunz, health planner for Carroll County Health Department.

The campus-wide email from McDaniel, a private college in Westminster, said the decision was made “in light of decisions made by the University System of Maryland and our regional peer institutions.” Multiple other universities and colleges in the state have also announced plans for remote instruction.

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The college said in the message that campus activities, including those related to athletics, could be affected.

The college told students to bring all essentials such as medications, as well as all materials needed for coursework, with them when they leave campus for spring break, which is scheduled to run from March 13 to March 22.

Students may make requests through the Office of Residence Life at residencelife@mcdaniel.edu or 410-857-2240 if they wish to remain on the campus during or after spring break.

Campus offices will be open during the two-week period of remote, online instruction.

McDaniel’s off-campus graduate cohorts will continue face-to-face instruction for the time being. Students completing student-teaching internships should continue to follow the guidance given by their home school system.

“The McDaniel College Coronavirus Task Force continues to actively review this dynamic and evolving situation. Continue to visit the College’s COVID-19 (Coronavirus) webpage for new information and campus updates,” the campus-wide email stated.

A total of 12 people have tested positive for the coronavirus in Maryland as of Wednesday night. There have been more than 125,000 confirmed cases and more than 4,600 deaths globally.

The college had announced Tuesday that international travel affiliated with the college is prohibited, and anyone who travels on a cruise ship or to a country designated by the State Department Travel Advisory as Level 2, 3, or 4 because of the coronavirus will not be allowed to return to the campus until self-quarantining for 14 days.

College officials also discouraged “College-affiliated travel to locations within the United States where states of emergency have been declared related to significant numbers of cases of COVID-19.”

More information about travel restrictions and communications is available online at www.mcdaniel.edu/student-life/health-wellness/covid-19-coronavirus-information/covid-19-corona-virus-related-travel. General information about the coronavirus and its effects on McDaniel College is available at https://www.mcdaniel.edu/student-life/health-wellness/covid-19-coronavirus-information.

Carroll Community College

Carroll Community College President James Ball announced Wednesday in an emailed update to students and staff that the college will hold all classes as scheduled.

However, the college has decided to cancel all professional out-of-state travel for employees, until further notice, as of close of business Friday, Ball says in the email. All college-organized out-of-state student trips will be canceled as well.

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The college is leaving open the possibility that plans for events scheduled for March, April and May could change, and Ball said “any change to an event will be communicated as soon as possible.” College officials are also discussing plans for after spring break, which runs March 22-29, and Ball said he will “provide an update on those matters as decisions are made but at this time all employees should plan for business as usual until further notice.”

Anyone who travels to a country designated by the State Department Travel Advisory as Level 2, 3, or 4 because of the coronavirus will not be allowed to return to the campus until self-quarantining for 14 days. In addition, the email states, “If you have traveled to Washington State, California, or New York since February 26th or plan to travel to these highly impacted areas of the U.S., please contact your area Vice President to determine if upon return you should consider self-quarantine for 14 days.”

If anyone is told by their health care provider to self-quarantine, Ball urges them to contact a college vice president.

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