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Yale’s response efforts, student concerns days after announcement of first COVID positive student case

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NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — Yale University is preparing to welcome undergrads back to campus Monday. This just days after the school announced its first positive COVID-19 case. And some students are concerned even with precautions in place.

The Dean of Yale College Marvin Chun sent out the announcement of the first coronavirus positive case among students who have already moved onto campus just last week.

RELATED: Some Yale students concerned on how the university plans to help curb COVID-19 on campus

The school told News 8 the student is asymptomatic and is resting in isolation housing designated for students who may test positive throughout the semester.

But students say it’s concerning.

Undergrads are set to make their way back to campus starting Monday and Yale has set some parameters about testing students whether they live on-campus or in off-campus housing. They say all students who live on campus or not will be required to be tested twice a week.

But students tell News 8 the concern here is welcoming another round of students from all across the country, all over the world, and beyond. Some say they are concerned over the potential for community spread despite the policies already in place at Yale.

Adam Waters a Yale graduate student told News 8 Sunday, “My concern is we have seen other schools attempt to re-open in the last several weeks, and in many cases, pretty soon after students have arrived back on campus there has been an outbreak or series of outbreaks.”

He went on to say, “The situation is really scary. As much as it’s predicated on good policy, it’s also predicated on luck as we’ve seen with at other universities where some universities have been able to open successfully so far and others have not. And it just has to do with how many were infected when they arrived and what happened in those first couple of days to prevent an outbreak.”

Waters added, however, that Yale’s testing policy does give him some confidence.

“Yale has a very comprehensive program for testing students who are living on campus every week or in some cases twice-a-week and so there is some reason to believe that Yale might be in a better position than some other schools at controlling and identifying positive cases and controlling the spread of COVID to prevent outbreaks,” he said. “But what I’m really concerned about is it’s not clear to me how successful that’ll be.”

Waters says the influx of more students makes him worry, too, about the impact on the Greater New Haven area.

Many seeing this moment as a wait-and-see game, hoping for the best.

“There’s this sort of collective sort of holding of our breaths because we don’t really know where this is going,” said Alexander Kolokotronis another Yale graduate student. “We’re just hoping that things don’t spin out of control, where right now things do feel in control.”

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