WESTMINSTER, Md. (WJZ) — McDaniel College is welcoming students to campus for the Fall 2020 semester a day after announcing two people tested positive for COVID-19.

The college spread its welcome week over a six-day period so families could practice social distancing during registration and the move-in process.

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The two who tested positive, including an undergraduate student, are currently isolating.

Starting Thursday, McDaniel students will be taking a combination of in-person and online courses.


The college created a color-coded system — green, yellow and red — showing the risk levels on campus. On Tuesday, the status was yellow; meaning the community should take precautions like checking symptoms twice a day and limiting gatherings.

McDaniel spent over $2 million in COVID safety measures like installing body scanners to check temperatures and increasing cleaning staff, according to Cheryl Knauer, the college’s public relations director.

At the University of Maryland, photos show how leaders plan on enforcing social distancing if students return to in-person classes. For now, its classes remain online until mid-September.

READ MORE: Maryland Has Three Confirmed Cases Of The Omicron Variant Of COVID-19, Hogan Says

Schools across the country are facing challenges concerning when and how to bring their students back to campus.

The University of North Carolina Chapel Hill canceled in-person classes Monday after 130 students tested positive. Videos surfaced online showing students partying both on- and off-campus.

The Notre Dame University in Indiana reported 147 cases Tuesday, but it is still staying open.

“The majority of community spread right now is happening from parties,” said Doctor Deborah Birx from the White House Coronavirus Task Force.

But at McDaniel College, students are not letting COVID keep them from enjoying this fall semester.

“Even if it is six feet apart, with masks on, socially distanced, it’s still great to just see everyone again,” sophomore Carly Ludwig said.

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For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.

Annie Rose Ramos