The United States is entering its worst period of COVID-19 infections to date. On Friday, the nation set a new record for daily infections, reporting more than 184,000 in a single day.

Experts have long predicted that winter would be worse for infections, leading to more outbreaks across the country. And also predicted that the wave would not bypass colleges and universities in the United States.

In response to the rise in cases this week and last, higher ed institutions have been the transition to online learning in large numbers. Last week alone, at the least 20 institutions announced that it will be switching to online learning for the rest of their semesters. These schools cited both cases increasing across the country and new infections on their campuses as reasons for change.

"There is a small number of institutions. This is a large number of institutions, "said Chris Marsicano, director of the Crisis Initiative University at Davidson College, which is tracking college plans and modalities. "Surely it is becoming a trend."

Some of the institutions that have made announcements were already planning to transition students learning and remote movement out of school just before Thanksgiving. Now they are closing operations in Person this week, or last. These universities, including Seton Hall University, Cleary University, Vincennes University, the College of the King and Drake University, have moved their timelines for change to line up only modestly.

Others, like the University of Maryland at College Park, the University of Missouri in Columbia, Villa Maria College and the Universities of Wisconsin in Eau Claire, River Falls and Stout, had been planning to continue the classes in Person until the end of the semester, but are now making the transition to the line during the break or before. They moved to their timelines more aggressively in some cases.

With so many students leaving university campus, questions are swirling about the possible effects on public health. Because the campus are collective institutions that can encourage the spread, public health and medical experts have expressed concern about students leaving university college and potentially infect their families and communities.

A significant number of institutions, said Marsicano, they have not announced plans to test students for COVID-19 before leaving the school, despite switching to online instruction or closing residences.

"That is worrying for us at the initiative of the University of crisis in the Davidson College, because we understand from our research that if you can control the mobility of students and specifically the mobility of students COVID-positive, you can keep all healthy, "he said. "What you do not want to do, what they are doing some institutions, is to let students into the wind without trying first."

Universities that are making the switch has changed the way complete their closures are meant to be. While some universities, such as Westfield State College and the University of Maine, San Jose, are closing residences and forcing students to move out, others, like Northern Michigan University, are allowing students to stay on campus if they wish.

"in general, institutions are finishing classes in Person and remote switching on Thanksgiving in the type of emergency are also asking students to leave their homes," said Marsicano .

for institutions that are asking students to leave, in some cases, the response time can be fast. State of Westfield, who announced his return Monday moveout staggered starts today, just one day later. (Westfield State students will get prorated refunds for housing, the university said.)

In San Jose, the administration announced on Sunday that the exit plan would start the next day. Students are required to be tested in shifts

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