Purdue’s decision to start online classes after spring break due to coronavirus concerns was unsurprising to some students immediately after Tuesday’s announcement.
“Honestly I was expecting it,” said Alejandra Hernandez Cruz, a sophomore in the College of Pharmacy, “or I thought they’d do something like that.”
Hardi Sura, a senior in the College of Engineering, is not planning on returning to India and said will remain at Purdue, but the coronavirus outbreak has affected other travel plans.
“I’m a graduating senior so I was hoping my parents would come here for commencement but now like all my travel plans are kind of on the fence,” she said, “cause nobody’s really sure.”
Another student in the College of Engineering said he will be returning home to Miami for spring break. Sophomore Vladimir Zeltsman is not worried about the coronavirus since he said it affects mainly older people.
“I know it’s probably more so for the older faculty,” he said,” because that’s who it’s gonna hit the hardest if something does happen here.”
Zeltsman said he would be returning after break.
“I’ll be coming back after break, staying in my apartment, watching videos online,” he said.
While Sura recognized the significance of the coronavirus, she said there hasn’t been as many deaths compared to the flu.
“To be honest I think it’s good they’re taking all the measures,” she said, “but we need to calm down a little bit so that it’s not as chaotic.”
Purdue instructors must move their courses to "online or alternative delivery methods" by March 23, according to an email sent to the Purdue community Tuesday afternoon.
No end date was given for the new policy.
"To be clear, the campus will remain open after spring break. However, starting March 23, students must take their courses online," the email states. "Students in clinical programs, such as the (doctor of veterinary medicine program), will be contacted directly by their department."
The email asks all faculty members to accommodate students who may not feel well by relaxing attendance policies.
Students who live in residence halls are able to return to dormitories after spring break, but can choose not to do so, according to the email.
Further international travel is canceled through May 2, as well as all summer study abroad programs.
"A faculty or staff member who believes that they have an essential business reason to travel by air can request a waiver through their unit leader (dean, vice provost, vice president, etc.)," it reads, "but the expectation is such waivers will be rare. Nonessential travel by other means (bus, van, car) is strongly discouraged.
"Students will be reimbursed by the University for any (study abroad) expenses that are not reimbursable from other sources. Students should check with their academic adviser about alternative coursework for the summer."
The email says research practices as well as all other campus operations will continue as normal, and the University still hopes to hold commencement.