Texas Tech President Points to Off-Campus Parties as Reason for COVID-19 Spike
Texas Tech President Dr. Lawrence E. Schovanec penned a stern letter to students following a spike in COVID-19 cases in the second week of classes for the Fall 2020 semester.
Dr. Schovanec's letter, posted on the university's Facebook page Thursday afternoon (September 3rd), pointed out that despite precautionary steps taken after the spring semester, including a June mask mandate and sanitization stations set up across campus, the uptick in COVID-19 cases comes early in the school's reopening after summer break.
"The great majority of you are following the protocols we outlined in the Texas Tech Commitment, but those who are not are placing our entire campus community at risk," said Dr. Schovanec.
According to KAMC, there were 477 active cases of COVID-19 at Texas Tech University as of September 3rd, 2020. The total positive case count at the school weighed heavily toward the student body, with 591 students testing positive for the virus. Eighty employees have also contracted the novel coronavirus as of that day.
The president didn't rule out "significant adjustments to our plans" if on-campus cases spiral out of control, though didn't elaborate on exactly what those adjustments would be.
"We know, through our contact tracing efforts, that most of our positive cases are the results of parties and other social gatherings that are taking place off campus," Dr. Schovanec said. He also urged students, faculty and staff to not travel during the Labor Day holiday weekend, which could only serve to spread the coronavirus further.
"Now more than ever, it's critical that we follow all health and safety protocols to protect ourselves and our greater Lubbock community," he said.
According to Texas Tech University, a walk-up clinic at Urbanovsky Park will offer free COVID-19 testing beginning Friday, Sept. 4th through Sept. 23rd, 2020. More information about the clinic's hours of operation can be found here.
To all those that are partying and presumably spitting in each other's faces: I get it. You're young, this is college, you were promised the time of your life. I really do sympathize.
As an old lady, I miss going to skeezy dive bars or standing in other people's sweat at swampy metal shows. But if we can just chill for a bit, perhaps even do our homework instead of partying, this can finally be over at some point and we can get back to being gross.
I promise I want it as much as you do. In the meantime, stack up some As so you can blow off your senior year (duh).