NC State's athletic program remains on hold Wednesday as it enters Day 3 of a temporary suspension of activities -- including football practice -- because of a confirmed COVID-19 outbreak.
According to figures provided on social media by senior associate athletic director Fred Demarest, 22 new positives were reported among the latest group of 693 new tests administered to Wolfpack athletes, coaches and staff members.
Though the athletic cluster that has forced the postponement of the Wolfpack's scheduled football opener at Virginia Tech on Sept. 12 is by far State's most publicized case, it is hardly the only one that has been reported in recent days.
State's safety office announced on Tuedsay that it has identified seven new clusters, three of which are located on the school's main campus, one in University Towers and three in nearby off-campus apartment complexes.
As a result, chancellor Randy Woodson has issued an order to shut down university housing beginning Thursday.
"Over the past few days, our campus community has experienced a quickly rising number of positive cases of COVID-19 in both on- and off-campus housing," Woodson said in the letter posted on State's "Protect the Pack" website. "We hoped and strived to keep residence halls open and safe to best serve our students. However, the rapid spread and increasing rate of positive cases have made our current situation untenable.
"NC State students who occupy university housing are instructed to schedule a time to move out of on-campus residences, beginning tomorrow, unless an exception is granted. To help ensure physical distancing, move-out will occur over an 11-day period, by appointment, beginning Thursday, Aug. 27, and ending Sunday, Sept. 6."
A cluster is defined by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services as five or more cases that are deemed close proximity or location.
According to NC State Safety, the three main campus outbreaks include:
- Eight positive cases at Bragaw Residence Hall
- Six positive cases at Metcalf Residence Hall
- Five positive cases at Owen Residence Hall
The cluster at University Towers, located adjacent to campus, involves 17 confirmed positives
The off-campus cases are reported at:
- Sixteen cases, all among State students, at the Stanhope Apartment Complex, located near the 3100 block of Hillsborough Street
- Six cases, all State students, at the UnCommon Apartment Complex, located near the 3000 block of Hillsborough Street
- Five cases at Valentine Commons Apartment Complex, located near Hillsborough Street and Concord Street
In all, State has reported 21 confirmed clusters since students began returning to campus.
Although State officially switched to online only classes for the remainder of the fall semester on Monday, its residence halls had remained open for those students wanting to remain on campus.
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