Colleges, universities plan for students to return in the fall

Posted at 4:30 PM, May 13, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-13 21:19:40-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — COVID-19 forced college students across the country to finish their semesters online. As we rebound from the pandemic, administrators are now looking into ways to have students back on campus.

Middle Tennessee State University, Lipscomb University, and Belmont University are just three schools in Middle Tennessee that have announced they intend to have in-person classes again this fall.

Vanderbilt University officials said they have not made a final decision regarding bringing back students in the fall.

MTSU president Dr. Sidney McPhee says after speaking with parents and students, it was clear that it was much more preferred than being locked up in room with computer with zero interaction.

Dr. McPhee says MTSU has put together a task force to look at different scenarios when it comes to housing and classrooms.

"One scenario might be we look at having not having four students to a room and making sure we have all of the sanitation in place and wearing in mask," Dr. McPhee said.

They’re also considering smaller classes or doing hybrid classes, meaning students would have both in person and online classes.

"We don’t know what state we will be in in terms of disease but certainly follow CDC guidelines, recommendations coming out of Washington and of course our state," said McPhee.

Currently, the plans are fluid, just like this virus but what won’t change McPhee says is putting safety first. Administrators say if they have to they will go back to online classes for the fall.