Trinity College extends remote instruction through end of week, reports 45 recent COVID cases

HARTFORD — Trinity College students and professors will stick with remote learning through the end of the week, after a spike in new coronavirus infections brought the school’s caseload to 45.

As of Monday, the small liberal-arts school of about 2,100 undergraduate students was still reporting the 45 active cases, all discovered within the last week.

Trinity officials said the move to stick to remote instruction through Friday, Oct. 16 is intended to “reduce circulation” and get the college “back on track and continue the semester as we’d all anticipated,” in a message to students Saturday.

The 45 cases are mostly affecting “clusters of students who live in off-campus housing and don’t appear to be diffusely spread across campus,” the message said.

Most of those students are in isolation or soon would be, Saturday’s message said.

Around 10 students elected to return home after becoming infected, the school said.

Health experts have advised against that as cases have emerged at colleges and universities around the country, since it can lead returning students to bring the virus back with them to their home communities.

Trinity raised its COVID-19 alert status to orange last week in response to the new cases, forcing students to go to remote-learning only through Monday before extending remote instruction on Saturday.

The heightened alert level comes with additional restrictions.

Students are banned from leaving campus for non-essential reasons. Gatherings of any size are prohibited. Students living off-campus are not allowed to visit dorms and vice-versa.

The school has also closed two athletic facilities except for COVID-19 testing, and the library is open by-appointment-only.

The University of New Haven, in West Haven, has also suspended classes through the end of the week and raised its alert level to orange after its caseload spiked to 97 active COVID-19 infections over the weekend.

Fairfield University has also raised its alert level to orange and has directed off-campus students to quarantine in their homes after 61 new cases emerged there last week.

It’s unclear whether the school recorded new cases over the weekend, because the university’s dashboard is updated on Tuesdays and Fridays each week, rather than daily.

Sacred Heart University, also in Fairfield, reported no new cases on Sunday. The university’s number of active COVID-19 infections has fallen to 107— 72 off-campus, 34 on-campus, and one case among employees.

Around the rest of the state:

Quinnipiac University in Hamden reported 16 new cases in the past week as of Monday, bringing the school’s cumulative total to 21 cases this semester.

Western Connecticut State University, which has campuses in Danbury and Waterbury, reported one new case – a commuter – last week, bringing the semester total to seven cases.

Southern Connecticut State University, in New Haven, reported seven new cases last week. Six of the new cases were among commuter students, one was a university employee.

The University of Saint Joseph in West Hartford reported one new case, a commuter student, between Oct. 3 and Friday, Oct. 9.

Central Connecticut State University in New Britain reported no new cases on Sunday, and two new cases Saturday, both commuter students not at the New Britain campus.

Connecticut College in New London reported three new cases last week, two among students, and one a school employee. The new cases bring the school’s active case load to eight— four students, four employees.

Eastern Connecticut State University reported four new cases among residential students last week. As of last week, the school reported 33 commuter students in isolation or quarantine, along with 31 residential students.

On Monday, the University of Connecticut reported no new cases among students living on-campus at Storrs for the third straight day. The number of active cases on campus remained at eight, the lowest it has been since Aug. 19, shortly after the college began testing students for their return to campus.

No new cases were also reported off campus, among employees, or at the university’s four other campuses.

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