As COVID-19 cases continue to surge across Southern California, students at California Baptist University are preparing themselves for a different spring semester. The drastic rise in cases has made the health of students and staff an increasingly heavy burden to bear, one that returning students must help shoulder if the school is to have a successful semester. Therefore, it is imperative that students returning to campus do their part to stop COVID-19 from spreading within the student body.
Julia Olson, junior sociology major and resident adviser, said she believes the student body can take steps toward health and safety if they remain cautious.
“Stay inside,” Olson said. “The less time we spend wandering around outside, the easier it will be to keep numbers down. If you want to avoid the crowds, maybe order your food at non-mealtime hours. Continue to stay six feet apart from others. It’s been a hard year for all of us. The more we work together the sooner we’ll achieve normalcy.”
The future of both the student body and on-campus life now partially rests in the hands of those who have chosen to return for the spring semester. If students choose to neglect their responsibility to keep themselves and their peers safe, there could be severe consequences. However, many CBU students believe that these consequences can be avoided entirely if they adhere to the guidance of the school administration and executive council.
Hannah Darke, junior Christian behavioral science major and RA, said that if students can simply abide by the rules that have been set in place, then they will have done enough to slow the spread and fulfill their responsibility.
“One way that students can do their part to stop the COVID spread on campus is by respecting the guidelines so that CBU can be a safe campus, and to keep the campus open to on-campus living,” Darke said. “Simply wear your mask.”
Adhering to school restrictions and rules may be an inconvenient task, but it is nonetheless a necessary action that students must take to both preserve what remains of normal campus life, and regain ground that has been lost to the pandemic.
Brian Zunigha, director of discipleship at Spiritual Life, advises students to keep aware of the new reality that the pandemic has created if they wish to return to normal CBU life.
“We can all play a role in protecting ourselves, our friends, and our families by following the university’s health and safety guidelines, which can all be readily found at the website address: https://calbaptist.edu/spring2021/health-safety.” Zunigha said. “Very simple practices of wearing face coverings and maintaining proper physical distancing really aren’t all inconvenient when you consider how those things can reduce the spread of COVID and protect the lives of others.”
Research and experience have shown that COVID-19 can have detrimental effects if not taken seriously. Those being cared for in the ICU, and worse yet, those who have lost family or friends to the virus, can testify to the disastrous effect it can have if treated too lightly.
The effects and reality of COVID-19 are still present. Local, state, and federal authorieties have set guidelines in place for CBU administartion to adhere to.
Therefore, CBU students have the responsibility to exhaust every measure and do their best to halt the spread of COVID-19.