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Whitmer addresses coronavirus concerns, recommends online classes


Gov. Gretchen Whitmer conducts a press conference after two confirmed coronavirus cases in Michigan.

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer once again addressed concerns after she confirmed two COVID-19 cases in Michigan Tuesday night. 

Whitmer called on universities to stick to online classes when possible and limit large gatherings — exactly what Central Michgian University did this afternoon when it announced a transition to online classes. 

Many other universities are also switching to online classes either temporarily or for the rest of the semester, such as Michigan State University, the University of Michigan, Wayne State University and Western Michigan University.

"Think about those at risk of severe illness," Whitmer said. "Think about our most vulnerable populations. We want to take every precaution necessary to keep people safe and keep yourself safe and keep our communities safe."

Whitmer emphasized techniques to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus, such as washing your hands thoroughly and staying home if you're sick to protect others. Chronically-ill people should also stay home and lessen contact with people who may be sick.

"We've gone through tough times in Michigan -- we must get through this," Whitmer said.

CMU will be moving to online classes starting March 16 until March 20. On March 19 at 4 p.m., the university will be deciding on whether to extend the format.

CMU also urged students to stay home and take only essential items from their dorms starting Sunday, March 15 to the 16 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

All gatherings at CMU with more than 50 people will be cancelled, President Davies said in an email. Campus services such as the Charles V. Park Library and the Counseling Center will remain open. 

"Remember, above all, to care for yourself and others and wash your hands frequently," Davies said.