LIVE UPDATE: WARTBURG TO MOVE TO REMOTE LEARNING AFTER EASTER

SILVIA OAKLANDTRUMPET EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

22 CONFIRMED COVID-19 CASES IN IOWA
The Iowa Department of Public Health has confirmed 22 cases of COVID-19, in the state of Iowa, according to KCRG.

Wartburg cancels all student travel during tour week, May Term

Classes at Wartburg College are still being conducted in person for the foreseeable future, as advised from the Bremer County Health Department, Iowa Department of Public Health and CDC, according to an email sent to the student body at 5:11 p.m. on Thursday, March 12, from President Darrell Colson.

The email also stated that all trips, both international and domestic, during Tour Week and May Term for the 2019-20 academic year are canceled.

President Colson also said in the email that the college will work to make sure students have academic support to continue their path for a timely graduation and will also do it’s best to recover the money that has been paid to refund student’s account.

“We cannot guarantee that we’ll recover every dollar, but we will do our very best,” President Colson said. “To that end, we will not hold any outstanding May Term charges against students when registering for classes or housing for the 2020-21 year.”

The college has created a website containing information about the COVID-19 virus for students, parents and faculty which contains links and information about the virus. Go to info.wartburg.edu/Student-Life/Coronavirus-Updates.

Iowa regent universities, many private colleges move to online only

IOWA – Coe College, in Cedar Rapids, is extending spring break for an extra week, which will now last through March 29, with classes scheduled to resume on March 30, according to KCRG. Morningside College, in Sioux City, is extending spring break through March 22, according to the college’s website.

HIGHER EDUCATION PREP DURING PANDEMIC
– Simpson College, Indianola, Suspended through March 29
– Buena Vista University, Storm Lake, Extended break through March 29
– Clarke University, Dubuque, Extended break March 23 to April 5
– Coe College, Cedar Rapids, Suspended through March 29
– Drake University, Des Moines, Extended break March 23 to April 5
– Grandview University, Des Moines, Extended break, March 23 to April 3
– Grinnell College, Grinnell, Suspended starting March 23
– Iowa State University, Ames, Online only March 23 to April 3
– Kirkwood Community College, Cedar Rapids, Online only March 23 to April 10
– Loras College, Dubuque, continuing face-to-face classes
– Mercy College of Health Sciences, Des Moines, Suspended starting March 23
– Morningside College, Sioux City, Extended break through March 22
– St. Ambrose University, Davenport, Suspended through March 29
– University of Iowa, Iowa City, Online only March 23 to April 3
– University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls, Online only March 23 to April 3
– Wartburg College, Waverly, continuing face-to-face classes
— Information provided by local media reports and college websites.

Grand View University, in Des Moines, has announced that college will move to “social distancing” with all classes online for two weeks after spring break, Drake University, both in Des Moines, has also announced the same extension, March 23 to April 3, according to KCCI and the college’s website. Clarke University, in Dubuque, is extending spring break from March 23 through April 5, according to the college’s website.

St. Ambrose University, in Davenport, has suspended face-to-face instruction through at least March 29, according to the Des Moines Register. Kirkwood Community College, in Cedar Rapids, announced that classes will no longer meet in person from March 23 through at least April 10, according to the Des Moines Register.

At 9 p.m. eastern standard on Wednesday, March 11, President Donald J. Trump addressed the public on COVID-19, the coronavirus. During the address, President Trump stated that all American travel to Europe, excluding the United Kingdom, has been suspended for 30 days going into effect at midnight, Friday, March 13.

President Trump also stated that the current guidance issued on school closures and other public gatherings should be followed from local public health officials.  President Trump mentioned that he has issued both legislative and executive laws to help financially support the CDC and its testing of coronavirus, along with the use of medical supplies.

Other legislation is being examined by Congress and President Trump to provide relief to American workers that are concerned for financial hardship.

“Smart actions today will prevent the spread of the virus tomorrow,” President Trump said. “It is essential to take extra precautions and practice good hygiene…”

The coronavirus is also impacting championship athletic events across the United States. Mark Emmert, NCAA president, issued a statement at 4:29 p.m., Wednesday, March 11, stating that upcoming championship events of all divisions will not be open to fans, according to ncaa.org. Limited family members and staff will be allowed. 

“While I understand how disappointing this is for all fans of our sports, my decision is based on the current understanding of how COVID-19 is progressing in the United States,” Emmert said. “The decision is in the best interest of public health, including that of coaches, administrators, fans and, most importantly, our student-athletes.”

Wartburg wrestlers will compete at the NCAA Division III National Championships beginning Friday, March 13, and concluding Saturday, March 14, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Members of Wartburg’s men’s and women’s track and field teams will compete in the NCAA Division III Indoor National Championships March 13-14 in Winston Salem, North Carolina. 

The University of Dubuque, in Dubuque, Iowa, released on Wednesday, March 11, that students and faculty will return to campus following the college’s spring break, which began March 7. The break concludes on Sunday, March 15, according to dbq.edu. The college requested that individuals who may have been in contact with COVID-19 due to travel or second hand to self-monitor for 14 days.

University of Northern Iowa, University of Iowa, and Iowa State University have announced a move to online classes starting March 23, 2020, through April 3, 2020, following spring break.

The State of Iowa Board of Regents had asked that the three Regent Institutions to plan for the move.

Wartburg students and parents were sent an email at 8:03 a.m., March 10, to update the campus on the COVID-19, coronavirus, outbreak and its impact on the Wartburg community, including the Wartburg West campus in Denver, Colorado, from Dr. Daniel Kittle, vice president of Student Life and dean of students. 

According to the email, as of March 10, 14 cases of the coronavirus have been confirmed in Iowa and 12 cases have been confirmed in Colorado. The email also included information about a group of faculty and staff who are monitoring multiple elements of the study abroad travel for Tour Week and May Term including a focus on health and safety, academic ramifications and financial risk. 

According to Kittle, the college will share additional information with the campus community when it is available and provide action steps when necessary.

The state of Iowa has opened a 211 hotline as the central resource to assist Iowans with questions regarding the COVID-19 outbreak, according to northlibertyiowa.org. For the most up-to-date information regarding the virus, as well as guidance for businesses, schools, healthcare, long-term care, and travel, visit the Iowa Department of Public Health’s website.

World Health Organization declares COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic, according to the Associated Press.

Faculty and staff of the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics were notified Wednesday that its first COVID-19 patient was admitted, the patient “remains in critical condition in our care,” according to the Gazette.

Grinnell College, in Grinnell, Iowa, is shifting to distance learning and will minimize students in residence hall, according to to the college’s website. All Grinnell students are expected to leave Grinnell’s campus by Monday, March 23. 

Augustana College has canceled all travel to Asia and Iowa State University, according to WQAD TV, has suspended international travel for 30 days, according to Iowa State Board Regents. The University of Northern Iowa has also canceled international travel for at least 30 days.

The CDC has a section for colleges and universities to plan, prepare and respond here. As well as tips for college students here.

The Johns Hopkins University & Medicine has an interactive map for the Coronavirus COVID-19 Global Cases by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering, click here https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/map.html.

Fore more information, go to the Iowa Department of Public Health website here.

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