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Countdown to college: How the Coronavirus is impacting college campuses

By Lee Shulman Bierer, The Charlotte Observer on

Published in Education News

It does seem to get scarier every day. More cases, more deaths and continued community spread. This has prompted the government, hospitals, companies, organizations and colleges across the U.S. to create contingency plans and keep their audiences informed about what they're doing.

Many colleges and universities are cancelling live classes and taking instruction online, asking students to stay put in their dorm rooms. Some schools, including Berea College in Kentucky, have sent their students home for the remainder of the semester.

In addition to thinking about their current students, colleges and, specifically, their admissions offices need to think about their prospective students - high school students. Many of the seniors who have already been accepted were excited to visit during "admitted student weekends" to help them make a final decision. Equally important are the juniors who are finalizing their college lists and planning spring break trips to visit multiple schools.

Nothing will be "same old, same old" this spring. There is a new normal due to the concerns over the spread of the coronavirus, or COVID-19.


In response to coronavirus concerns, many colleges and universities across the U.S. have announced cancellations or modifications to regular admissions events. Every school will determine its own protocol, so it's important to check with each school you're considering visiting to learn how you're likely to be affected by closures and cancellations.


Industry powerhouses College Kickstart (www.collegekickstart.com) and IvyWise (www.ivywise.com) have compiled lists that can help you with planning, and be sure to check each college's website for updated details.

IvyWise has updated its list (as of March 9) of some of the admissions event cancellations and other details:

Amherst College: Suspending most public on-campus events until at least May 1. It will not be holding any on-campus tours or information sessions until further notice.

Brown University: All "A Day on College Hill" admission events for April are canceled.


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