August 18, 2020
As thousands of college students arrive at their dorm rooms at Arizona’s three public universities, they bring with them an inevitability: Some will get sick with COVID-19.
Colleges have prepared for this eventuality, with plans for isolation rooms or whole dormitories designated for sick students. They plan to deliver meals to sick students, clean rooms and notify their contacts.
At Arizona State University and Northern Arizona University, students moving into the dorms have to be tested before coming to campus or immediately upon arrival. At the University of Arizona, students moving into the dorms will receive rapid tests when they get to campus.
Before students moved in, NAU had one resident assistant test positive for COVID-19, requiring dozens who had been in contact with the person to quarantine.
Expect to see more of that as thousands more students return.
Fall semester in the dorms will likely entail what society at large has entailed for the past few months, with people testing regularly, isolating when sick or testing positive and quarantining when they’ve had contact with a positive case.
Here’s what each university is doing to try to prevent the spread of the virus and to isolate those who become sick.