Video surfaces of students leaving dedicated COVID-19 residence hall to go to party
Central Michigan University's COVID-19 protocol has been called into question after a video was shared of students reportedly leaving a hall used to quarantine and isolate to attend a party.
On Aug. 11, junior Colm Klopcic tweeted his friend's video taken from his room inside the residence hall the university dedicated to sheltering students exposed to COVID-19.
The building houses students who have been instructed by the Central Michigan District Health Department to either quarantine if they have been identified as a close contact of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 or isolate after they have tested positive. Four of those students met up and decided to go to a party, according to the narrative on the Snapchat video.
CMU's official Twitter account responded to Klopcic's tweet on Aug. 12 saying the university is investigating the situation.
"CMU is aware of this video and it has been shared with the appropriate offices for investigation," the response read. "The health and safety of our faculty, staff and students, as well as the Mt. Pleasant community, are our top priorities."
The video's narrative stated there was no one monitoring the residence hall when the students left.
"The incident in question has helped us identify some issues we’re dedicated to working quickly to resolve," said Heather Smith, executive director of University Communications. "This is new territory for CMU — as it is for all institutions — and we will continue to adjust our operations to protect the health and safety of our campus and surrounding community."
University officials did not identify the residence hall where the video was taken. Smith provided information on what the residence hall is being used for:
- Students living off-campus will not quarantine or isolate in the residence hall.
- Staying in the residence hall on campus is one option for students who live on campus if they must quarantine or isolate. They also may choose to return home.
- Rooms in the hall are furnished with necessary items and food is delivered. Students receive instruction not to leave their floor and not to congregate or socialize.
- Residence hall staff check in on the students each day, but students are responsible for communicating with medical personnel, health department, professors, family members and others.
"We expect students to do their part to keep themselves and others safe, including following guidelines provided to them when entering isolation or quarantine," Smith said. "We are monitoring the quarantine hall closely, and if a student leaves the dedicated hall, the university will fully investigate whether or not they have violated the student code of conduct."