University of Notre Dame

Across the country, colleges and universities are struggling to decide how to teach students in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Some schools have turned to remote learning; some have attempted to reopen campus with various precautions in place. Others are trying a mix of both.

For the municipalities that are host to colleges and universities, these decisions can be costly. Whether it's curtailing the spread of the virus in their communities, or losing the typical influx of student spending that arrives each fall, these cities and towns are bracing for a challenge.

The University of Alabama is reporting more than 560 new cases of COVID-19 across its three campuses and medical center less than a week after starting classes.

According to data from a university dashboard, students, staff and faculty at the university's main campus, Tuscaloosa, account for 531 of the total confirmed cases since Aug. 19.

Rachel Collins / WKMS

 

Murray State University is beginning its second week with students on campus, and MSU President Bob Jackson tells WKMS despite a few hiccups, things are going well overall. He said he hopes the combination of students and staff adhering to the Racer Restart health measures and “making good choices” will result in the university’s ability to complete the fall semester in-person.

Two Midwestern universities announced on Tuesday that they will be modifying their fall plans because of the coronavirus pandemic. The University of Notre Dame is moving all undergraduate instruction online for two weeks, and Michigan State University is going fully remote for the semester.