Chancellor Martin’s immediate response to increased COVID cases

Courtesy+of+Kendall+Ivey

Courtesy of Kendall Ivey

Jamille Whitlow, TheYard Editor

Chancellor Harold L. Martin sent a second memo enforcing restrictions on the campus community to limit social gatherings. 

Since the A&T Register’s last COVID update, N.C. A&T has announced five new clusters on their COVID dashboard, four out of the five clusters were discovered on Apr. 12 within residence halls. 

Barbee Hall and Blair Hall had eight residents tested positive in each of their halls. Aggie Suites F had six residents who tested positive and Aggie Suites E had seven students tested positive. 

The dashboard’s most recent cluster was on Apr. 14, the football team had nine students test positive for COVID-19. 

Between the weeks of Apr. 2- Apr. 14, 59 students have tested positive and zero employees have tested positive. The total number of students who have tested positive since Jan. 1 is 569, and the total number of employees is 51. 

The school has since reverted to its prior operations, in-person dining, residence hall visitation and seating areas in the Student Center are now not permitted for the remainder of the semester. 

Marketplace and 1891 Bistro have been closed, leaving students with Williams Dining Hall, Chick-fil-A, SubConnection, McAlister’s Deli, Starbucks, Qdoba, Simply to Go and Aggie Wings as takeout only dining options. 

Additionally, the Food Truck Junction scheduled for April 15 was cancelled in response to Chancellor Martin’s memo.

 Due to the university’s limited options, many students have expressed how the lack of options negatively impacts students who are practicing Ramadan, a period where Muslims fast from Apr. 12 to May 12 from sunrise to sunset. 

One student in particular mentioned Aggie Dining and other N.C. A&T social media platforms to get their attention. She asked if Aggie Dining could consider extending Williams’ hour to 9 p.m.   

Aggie Dining extended their invitation to meet with her to talk about possible resolutions. 

“We’d love for you to meet with our Resident District Manager and General Manager to discuss possible resolutions. Would you please DM us your email address and we’ll set up a time to meet?” 

Campus Enterprise announced later that evening that service hours in Williams Dining Hall will be extended to 9 p.m. on the weekdays and 8 p.m. on the weekends. 

Chancellor Martin explained that other campus restrictions are possible if a change is not seen in student conduct at off-campus social events. 

“That could include elimination of in-person commencement ceremonies set for May 9/ Your compliance with basic prevention measures – wearing masks, social distancing and frequent hand washing – will determine whether we are forced to make those changes.”