As students return to campus for spring semester, COVID-19 cases at Mason remain low
BY LIANNA BROWN NEWS EDITOR
During the fall semester, Mason was applauded for its ability to keep campus COVID-19 cases low, reporting less than 500 cases among 50,000 students, faculty, staff and on-campus contractors, according to an email sent by President Gregory Washington. As the spring semester begins, Washington has urged Mason students to stay the course and follow the same protocols as in the fall semester.
In the fall semester, 13,496 students were tested, with 404 students testing positive for COVID-19. Also in the fall, 4,474 tests were administered to employees of which 135 employees tested positive. This is a 1 percent positivity rate for students and a 0.3 percent positivity rate for employees.
To keep COVID-19 cases low during the spring 2021 semester, Mason will not hold a spring break, will continue to hold hybrid courses and allow students to take classes fully online if they prefer.
Washington announced in an email, sent on Dec. 1, the new protocols being put into place include large-scale rapid testing run by Mason faculty, pre-testing residential students before they arrive to campus, prioritizing vaccinations for students and faculty returning to campus, and limiting the spread of COVID-19 through social distancing, mask-wearing, frequent hand washing and staying home.
According to Mason’s COVID-19 dashboard, as of Feb. 3, 35 students tested positive for COVID-19 out of 2,494 students tested, and 10 employees tested positive out of 114 employees tested.