Here's How Philly-Area Colleges Are Responding to the New Coronavirus

Students in the Philly area are seeing classes canceled, travel restricted

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Thursday, Drexel University was among the latest of the Philadelphia-area's many colleges and universities to move classes online in response to the new coronavirus.

In addition, any colleges and universities that are located in Montgomery County will be affected by the county's two-week lockdown announced Thursday, which closed all educational institutions.

Here is an alphabetical list of what universities are doing as of March 12, 2020:

Arcadia University

Arcadia University is closing its residence halls and canceling all events from 5 p.m. Sunday, March 15, to April 5. Students will be asked on Friday, March 12, to notify the Residence and Commuter Life department of the specific day and time they'll be leaving.

International students or those with travel restrictions will be allowed in the residence halls beyond March 15, but they'll have to submit a form to the Residence Life department by March 12. The school also promises accommodations for students in need.

Classes will switch to online until at least April 5.

The College of Global Studies' programs in Europe, Ireland and the United Kingdom are suspended. Students will be contacted about details.

The school has canceled the travel portion for all of its short-term study abroad courses, including Preview and Global Field Study, for the spring 2020 semester. In a statement to students, Provost and Senior vice president for academic affairs Jeff Rutenbeck called the decision “unprecedented.”

Students who complete the coursework will have the opportunity to study abroad during the 2020-21 academic year, while students who can’t do so will be refunded their $595 fee, Rutenbeck said.

Students, faculty and staff returning from China, Iran, Italy and South Korea should self-monitor for 14 days, per CDC recommendations, Rutenbeck said.

As the coronavirus outbreak continues to grow in the United States, government officials in New Jersey and Delaware are taking measures to make residents feel prepared and safe. NBC10's Lucy Bustamante reports.

Bucks County Community College

The college is closing all three of its campuses – the Epstein Campus at Lower Bucks in Bristol, the Newtown Campus, the Upper Bucks Campus in Perkasie – as well as its Public Safety Training Centers in Doylestown and Croydon from Saturday, March 14 through Sunday, March 22 for deep cleaning.

All events will be suspended starting Friday, March 13, and college-related travel is suspended through March 31.

Chestnut Hill College

The college will be closed until at least Sunday, March 15. Students, faculty and staff are not encouraged or expected to show up. If needed, online classes will begin March 16.

Students are also encouraged to leave campus immediately.

Cheney University

Cheney University has posted a notice on its web site saying classes have been canceled for next week, encouraging students to see a university email for more details.

Delaware County Community College

Delaware County Community College will shift all of its in-person instruction to online classes starting Monday, March 23. The online classes will last through the remainder of the spring semester.

DCCC is extending spring break by an additional week through Sunday, March 22 so faculty can plan the online classes.

Drexel University

Drexel University is extending spring break by a week and moving its exams online, the university said. When schools resume on April 6, they will be taught online.

The school said that it will reassess the situation for the week of May 4, and that graduation would remain on schedule.

Previously Drexel had canceled all spring study-abroad programs – including previously scheduled Intensive Courses Abroad – and international co-op placements for its spring-summer cycle.

The school also banned all school-related international travel, including for faculty and staff.

Esperanza College

The college is closed through Friday, March 13, for deep cleaning but is scheduled to reopen March 16.

Gwynedd Mercy University

Gwynedd Mercy University will close all campuses through March 31. Residential students are being sent home and all university activities and events will be canceled or postponed.

Course instruction for on-campus students will be moved online starting March 18.

Kutztown University

Kutztown, in Berks County, has suspended classes and closed residence halls through Saturday, March 21. At this point, the school plans to re-open dorms March 22 at 1 p.m. and classes will resume March 23.

All university-sponsored travel for faculty and students is canceled.

LaSalle University

The university is canceling in-person classes from March 23 to March 27. Faculty will still be required to report to campus during that time to prepare for remote teaching.

Classes will resume remotely from March 30 to April 3, with in-person classes starting again April 6.

Students are encouraged to stay away from campus through at least April 5. Students who wish to stay are asked to fill out the Housing Extension Request Form.

Lincoln University

In-person academic instruction at Lincoln is suspended for the remainder of the spring semester. Classes are canceled for the remainder of this week; starting Monday, March 16, classes will transition to alternate modes of instruction.

All students in university housing are required to vacate their rooms by Sunday.

Muhlenberg College

Muhlenberg, in Allentown, has canceled in-person classes after March 13. Alternative forms of education will be offered for all courses beginning March 18 and will continue through April 13, the school said, promising to share more information in the coming days.

All students must move out of on-campus housing no later than Saturday, March 14 at 2 p.m., the school said, though students can apply to stay on campus if travel "presents a significant and immediate safety concern or other approved circumstances exist."

Penn State

Penn State has switched to remote learning for classes at all its locations beginning Monday, March 16. Remote learning will continue through Friday, April 3, with a plan to resume in-person classes on Monday, April 6.

However, the university warned that April 6 would be "the earliest" that in-person classes would resume.

The change includes Penn State's Abington, Brandywine, Lehigh Valley and Berks locations, the school said in a statement.

Princeton University

Princeton University in Princeton, New Jersey, has told students to remain home after spring break and take classes online.

Online classes begin on March 23.

The school also is restricting large gatherings on campus.

Rowan University

Rowan has extended spring break by a week, in part to allow faculty and staff time to prepare online classes starting March 30 if needed, and is canceling events that bring external guests to campus.

Rowan also is no longer accepting university-related international travel through May 31. Students currently studying abroad are not yet required to return to the U.S., but the school is asking them to contact International Center Director Gokhan Alkanat at 856-256-5191 or with any questions or concerns.

Rowan also says it will provide financial assistance to students who are in high-risk areas and do want to return home. Those returning are asked to self-quarantine for 14 days.

Rutgers University

Rutgers canceled classes starting March 12 through the end of spring break on March 22. Then, beginning on March 23, course instruction will be delivered remotely.

Students in resident halls are being asked to leave campus as soon as possible and stay out through April 3. Anyone who can't leave is asked to contact the school's housing office.

Rutgers also has canceled all study abroad programs and international spring break programs. The university is recommending that faculty and staff curtail Rutgers-sponsored international travel, particularly to countries where COVID-19 has been identified, and that students in partner university or other-third party programs consider ending their participation and returning home.

A decision about study abroad programs for the summer and for next semester will be announced before the April 1 enrollment deadline.

St. Joseph's University

St. Joseph's is moving classes online on March 19, the school said. Students are encouraged to go home if they can, but they can remain in residence halls if needed, the school said.

Swarthmore College

Spring break is being extended through March 20. No classes will be offered during that time. Starting March 23, all classes will resume remotely through April 3.

Swarthmore College is asking people to stay away from countries that are under a do-not-travel advisory.

All university-sponsored travel is suspended through April 5.

Temple University

Temple University announced Wednesday it would end in-person instructions on Friday, March 13, at all of its U.S. campuses. The school will begin online and alternative learning methods on Monday, March 16, which will continue through the end of the spring semester.

Students in Temple housing were told to vacate as soon as possible but no later than March 21 at 5 p.m.

The announcement came after the school closed its satellite campus in Rome and moved classes in Japan to online through March 16 as the disease has taken hold in those countries.

Temple is asking students, faculty and staff who have traveled in the last two weeks to countries designated as having sustained transmission to self-monitor for 14 days before returning to campus. Faculty and staff members who are self-monitoring are asked to immediately contact their chair or supervisor.  

Thomas Jefferson University

Thomas Jefferson University has suspended all university-related travel through May 12.

Faculty-led short courses to France and group travel to Spain, which were previously scheduled to take place during spring break, have also been suspended out of an abundance of caution. Students in those programs will not be liable for travel-related costs due to the course suspension.

Business owners in the Philadelphia area are experiencing supply shortages from China due to the newest strain of coronavirus. NBC10's Randy Gyllenhaal spoke with local business owners affected by the shortages.

University of Delaware

After a professor at the University of Delaware tested positive for COVID-19, the university announced that classes are suspended for Thursday and Friday. Spring Break will begin on Saturday, March 14, and classes will shift online starting March 23 through the end of the semester.  

The school also said more information would be coming out soon for students.

Previously, the University of Delaware has canceled all university-sponsored international travel through the end of the spring semester.

The university has canceled its spring study abroad program in Rome. Students are not required to return to the main campus for courses, but those who wish to return to use school facilities are asked to self-quarantine for 14 days prior to doing so.

Those who are not returning to the main campus but are coming back from John Cabot University in Rome are also asked to self-quarantine for 14 days.

University of Pennsylvania

The University of Pennsylvania is moving all classroom teaching to virtual instruction for undergraduate and graduate classes starting Monday, March 23. Online classes will continue through the remainder of the spring semester.

Penn also is extending spring break for one week, except for students in health-related schools and programs in which Spring Break has already occurred.

Previously, Penn had suspended all school-affiliated travel through April 17 and is canceling large university events. It is also preparing for the possibility of moving all classes online after spring break.

Those who travel personally to countries where the CDC has issued travel guidance are asked to self-quarantine for 14 days before returning to campus.

Villanova University

Villanova has canceled in-person classes on campus, the school said Wednesday. Instead, classes will be held online starting March 16. Students may remain on campus or return home.

The school said that faculty had prepared for this scenario. Students with lab or clinical requirements should contact their professor directly to discuss scheduling.

A decision about resuming in-person classes will be made no later than April 3.

Widener University

Widener suspended all face-to-face classes beginning Thursday, March 12. Classes will resume electronically beginning Thursday, March 19 and continue in remote learning through the end of the spring semester.

West Chester University

West Chester University said Tuesday that it would postpone classes until March 30, and that then the rest of spring semester classes would be online.

The school is also closing residence halls and on-campus apartments. Staff will continue to report to work.

The university is working towards refunds for unused meal plans and housing, a spokesman said Wednesday.

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