Residence Life reveals new options for student move-in amid COVID-19 challenges
By Taylor Wooten
Franklin College Residence Life announced in emails to incoming and returning residential students initial plans for housing in the next academic year, including some changes that will be made in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
While specific details for life on campus have yet to be released, the email from residence life officials said students should expect adjustments to the guest policy and to how common spaces are used.
The email encouraged students who have a medical condition specified in a list by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that increases chances of a severe case of COVID-19 and who wish to remain on campus to request a room without a roommate.
These requests will be managed through a form on the Housing Self-Service Portal and are due by July 1 at 4 p.m. Medical documentation is required with these requests to evaluate student needs based and to meet requests as space allows.
Students who meet the commuter standard, such as by attaining senior credit status or living within 30 minutes of campus, are encouraged to fill out a Commuter Application if they feel more comfortable staying at home.
If a student would prefer to commute but does not meet the standards outlined in the student handbook, they may apply for an exception. College officials said students who wish to commute due to an underlying health condition that may be worsened by COVID-19 should provide medical documentation.
If roommate pairs will be disrupted with any of these changes, the resulting single roommate will have to have a roommate selected by July 6. Otherwise, the college will pair them with an incoming student or another student who lost their planned roommate.
The move-in date for first-year students is now Wednesday, Aug. 26, a day later than originally planned. New students will have to follow assigned, three-hour arrival windows to promote social distancing as they move in.
Questions regarding housing policies should be directed to email@example.com.
Franklin College has yet to announce formal plans for reopening campus in the fall. It remains unclear how learning and other activities will take place after spring classes were moved to a distance learning format as the COVID-19 pandemic unfolded.
This is a developing story and will be updated.