Email sent to Berry community announces new COVID-19 procedures

Michaela Lumpert, Campus Carrier news editor

In an email sent to students on Wednesday night, the Berry administration informed the community of several important new updates.

First, all students and employees will be tested for COVID-19 within the next few weeks. The need for testing comes from the spike in cases this past week. Students will be notified in the coming weeks about when they will be called to be tested. Students will also have to quarantine until their tests results are in. 

Second, the college has found that the recent increase in cases is specifically due to the athletic teams on campus. Because of this, the college is suspending all team practices for the next few weeks until they can review the practice protocols of the teams. It was not stated in the email when sports teams could resume practices. 

The email also stated that the Berry community has moved into an orange level of risk due to the increase of positive cases. Currently there are 15 new cases since Sept. 10, 12 student cases and three employee cases. Since Aug. 17, there have been 31 total cases, with 21 of these cases being students. 

Floyd County is at the red level of risk, or the highest risk level regarding COVID-19 infections. In the past 14 days, there have been 424 new COVID-19 cases, with 45 of these cases needing hospitalization. 

On Sept. 23, the “personal bubble” application will reopen for students to create new personal bubbles or edit the current bubbles they have created. As of Wednesday, 828 students have completed the “personal bubble” application, with 54 bubbles of two students and 23 bubbles of six students. 

Although the college has moved into an Orange risk level, scheduled events for this weekend and next week will still occur. Monday begins Solidarity Week, which the email explains that the list of events is located on Berry Connect. 

The email did not state a specific date on when students and employees will be COVID-19 tested. 

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