How COVID-19 is Affecting the Housing Process at Averett

Garrett Haskins, Staff Writer

No one would have imagined that the novel coronavirus would have impacted daily life like it has. Due to the virus’ rapid spread, the entire nation has gone under some form of lockdown depending on the locality. Every facet of daily life has been changed due to the stay-at-home orders that have been placed in effect.

The governor of Virginia, Ralph Northam, placed into effect a stay-at-home order on April 1 that restricts non-essential business, travel, and gatherings until June 10. The stay at home order was enacted to attempt to slow the spread of the virus as to not overcrowd the hospitals in the state with sick patients.

Many colleges in the United States have transferred to online classes and the majority of students have returned home for the rest of the semester. Averett announced that the school would be closed for a period of two weeks at the Spring Fling talent show, and later announced over email that the school would transfer to online classes for the rest of the semester.

In the days after the announcement students were to email Housing and Residence Life to schedule a time to collect their possessions. Students were designated specific times for them to come and collect their things.

Housing assigned times to students to avoid having a lot of people gathered on campus. Sophomore Zachary Greene, an aviation major, was one of the students that came to retrieve his things.

“Campus was like a ghost town,” Greene said. “There was barely anyone around the whole time I was there.”

When the governor announced the stay-at-home order, all appointments for students to get their belongings were called off. There are exceptions to this decision, but only in special circumstances.

“The Office of Housing and Residence Life will be hearing theses cases on an individual basis. Items such as medicine and academic resources will be considered but is not a guarantee. All other items are not deemed essential at this time.”

Greene was not thrilled with the way that Housing and Residence Life handled the cancellation of pick-up times.

“I understand that they have to stop them because of the stay-at-home order,” he said. “I just think that they should have at least ballparked a time frame for the other students to come get their stuff. I was able to get my stuff, but what about everyone who didn’t?’