Thousands of Cedarville University students and staff preparing for in-person classes Monday after positive COVID-19 case

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CEDARVILLE, Ohio (WDTN) – On Sunday more than a dozen Cedarville University students are in quarantine after an early arrival student tested positive for COVID-19 a few days ago. 

On Monday thousands of students and staff will begin the first day of in-person classes. Janice Supplee is the Vice President for marketing & communications at Cedarville University. She says, “Right away, even before we had the positive test result, we went ahead and did the contact tracing.” 

A Cedarville student is in isolation and 18 more are in quarantine after the university’s first positive COVID-19 case. Supplee says, “You never want to have a positive case, but honestly in our preparation, it’s not unexpected.” 

More than 900 hundred freshmen moved in Friday during a largely contact-less, drive-in process. Freshman Noah Buresh says, “I know they have good policies in place. It’s kind of inevitable that COVID will find its way.” 

The university planned ahead, setting aside a residence hall that is separate from university property and dedicating it for isolation. Students will wear masks and social distance. Instructors are not required to wear masks while teaching, but acrylic shields will be set up to stand behind if they can’t socially distance. 

Freshman Isaac Norr says, “I have gotten several emails from my professors saying they’ll have us spread out as much as possible and they want us to stay in the same seat the whole year.” 

In addition to her university position, Supplee is also the parent of an incoming freshman. “I have really been pleased to see how seriously our students are taking the protocols.” 

Cedarville will test students with symptoms but haven’t had to so far, and there are no other positive cases. Buresh says, “People are wearing masks, that’s a lot different. You can only see the upper half of their faces, so getting to know people is a bit more… You have to put yourself out there a little more.” 

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