With the COVID-19 pandemic, most classes at Rowan have been held virtually. The university announced a transition to holding more in-person classes starting this week. - Flickr / Kevin Dooley

Rowan University announced last week that more in-person classes and athletics would be allowed on campus because coronavirus rates are currently down in the campus area.

According to the official announcement released last week, the university has decided that more in-person activities and classes will resume with precautions put in place.

“Starting Monday, Sept. 28, we plan to increase in-person instruction incrementally to up to about 30 percent of the fall schedule. Following our plan, every aspect of our progress will be measured and implemented with the utmost caution,” the announcement said.

Although safety regulations will be in place and not all classes will return to face-to-face instruction, this is a big step toward a more populated campus. 

With not only an increase of more in-person classes but also team athletics beginning to practice collectively again, Rowan’s Glassboro campus will certainly see a significant increase in its daily populace.

“Starting Oct. 5, athletic teams will begin training together, and the Fitness Center is scheduled to open. Staff and students in all athletics and recreation facilities must be vigilant about health and safety, especially with indoor activity,” the announcement said.

While Rowan makes it very clear that it will implement rules and regulations regarding health and safety, it is unclear whether or not student increase on campus is good news. Even though most students agree that online Zoom classes are not ideal, not all Rowan students agree with this recent announcement.

“I think we should keep the classes online just for everyone’s safety, because it can be a hard transition depending on what major you have, but I feel like it’s easier to deal with that than have to deal with many students getting sick,” senior journalism major Skylar Moody said.

Moody, who lives on campus, expressed that she thinks the increase in Rowan’s in-person instruction is a bad idea, even with the current amount of coronavirus cases being relatively low on and around campus.

“I think to prevent spreading [coronavirus] even more, we should probably just stick to what we have now with online classes,” she said.

On the other hand, some students are content with Rowan’s plan for more face-to-face instruction to begin.

“I think that Rowan should obviously have an option to remain fully virtual, but I think that if it’s 25% capacity [in classrooms], as long as we can maintain that and masks are mandatory, and seats are spaced apart, it’s totally okay with me,” Jakob Oltman, a sophomore accounting and management information systems major said.

Although Oltman stated that he is undoubtedly concerned with Rowan ensuring safety precautions, he is definitely on board with Rowan’s announcement for an increase in face-to-face instruction.

Despite a variety of opinions from Rowan’s students regarding this recent announcement, Rowan plans to move forward with implementing more in-person activities on campus.

While not everyone agrees with this decision, Rowan also made it very clear in their official announcement that the university is “prepared to reverse” any of these in-person classes/activities if need be.

“We must keep health and safety as our priority,” the announcement stated.

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