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COVID surge halts in-person classes for 72 hours at University of Pikeville

Published: Sep. 22, 2020 at 9:19 PM EDT
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PIKEVILLE, Ky. (WSAZ) - The University of Pikeville continued its 72-hour quarantine Tuesday, keeping students in their residential spaces to clean the campus as the university’s total number of COVID-19 cases doubled over the weekend.

“Just yesterday, we had a high spike in cases. We went from six or seven to now fifteen just really quickly,” said UPIKE President Burton Webb.

According to the university’s dashboard, 15 active cases have been reported and 90 students are in quarantine.

Monday, the university sent an email to students, informing them they must stay in their rooms unless getting food for the next 72 hours. All classes will move online, and sports practices and games are cancelled.

Student-athlete Victor Johnson is eager to get back to the football field but wants everyone to be safe before doing so.

“We can’t put a magic wand on it and tell it to go away. We just have to take proper precautions to get over this hump,” Johnson said.

According to Dr. Webb, the university is unaware where the spread originated but did rule out any speculation of the spread being linked to an off-campus gathering.

“Other universities have had that, however, we haven’t tracked any parties or heard rumors of that,” Webb said.

The university on Wednesday will reassess with the Pike County Health Department to judge when in-person classes may resume.

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