Fairfield University Restricting Access to Campus After Uptick in COVID-19 Cases

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Students living off-campus at Fairfield University will not be allowed to return to campus for 14 days due to a recent spike in COVID-19 cases, according to the university.

"Throughout the first six weeks of our semester, we experienced steady but limited numbers of COVID-19 cases; and at the beginning of this week, we witnessed a significant downward trend in COVID-19 cases among our student population," President Mark Nemec said in a statement.

According to Nemec, there has been a significant increase in positive COVID-19 cases within specific populations of students over the past 48 hours.

Since Oct. 6, 60 students and one faculty member have tested positive for the virus. Nine of these students are being isolated on campus, according to the university.

Of the 60 new cases among students, 29 were discovered through contact tracing while 22 came from external tests taken by students. The other nine positive tests were found through surveillance testing, according to university officials.

Because of this, all off-campus students will be restricted from being on university grounds for 14 days, until Oct. 23. These students will learn remotely during this time frame and they are expected to limit interactions to their housemates only, university officials said.

Also, all NCAA sports and club sports are paused for the next 14 days, according to the university. The Walsh Athletic Center and the Recreational Complex will also be closed.

"As I have often noted, Fairfield’s strong sense of community, our optimism, and our resilience are at the heart of our identity as an institution. I am confident that this strength of character, and our determination to keep one another safe and well, will see us through the challenges that we face at this time," Nemec said.

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