Many international students choose to attend university in New York City, but the coronavirus has forced many to reconsider their plans to study in the Big Apple. While experts advise caution, the city has stepped up its response to coronavirus, and the numbers have shown drastic improvements.
For international students considering an in-person education, US universities are working hard to keep students informed and safe, and especially those in and around New York. Check out the latest coronavirus update from Adelphi University, which has its main campus in Garden City and also has a learning hub right in Manhattan, to see how students are adjusting to studying during the pandemic.
Coronavirus US: getting better in New York City
Back in April, things were really tough in New York City; coronavirus cases surged and restrictions were placed on everyday activities to help flatten the curve.
Master’s Accelerator Program (MAP) student Bexhultan arrived in New York City from Kazakhstan in January, ready to pursue his MBA at Adelphi. And then the world changed.
“It was sad, and I felt anxious for a little while,” Bexhultan said. “But I knew that this is New York, this was not the first crisis this city has faced, and this is why, after a week or so, I wasn’t really scared anymore.”
Back home in Almaty, Kazakhstan, the twenty-three-year-old MBA student’s family was concerned for his safety as confirmed COVID-19 cases spiked in New York. Despite the unknown outlook for the city, and the availability of online classes at Adelphi, Bexhultan decided to stay in the US.
“There was a big level of uncertainty about the border then. And, furthermore, in my country, unfortunately, it’s very dangerous because of COVID,” Bexhultan said. “In a matter of weeks, cases increased drastically.”
Bexhultan continued his education from his dorm room, which is located in a hotel in midtown Manhattan. As a self-described extrovert, Brexhultan missed going to class and interacting with professors and other students, but he was pleased with Adelphi’s response to the pandemic.
“They put us on online education even before it was ordered by the government, which I really appreciated,” Brexhultan said.
Coronavirus update: what international students can expect in New York City
Since July, New York City has been praised for its response to the pandemic. It has even been called the safest big city in the United States, after retaining approximately a 1 percent coronavirus infection rate and expanded testing and contact tracing. At publication time, New York City’s case rate was considered flat or decreasing. (You can check the latest charts from the New York Times to see coronavirus updates in metro areas across the US.)
While it is always important to stay informed, remember that the situation can change very quickly. Prepare to follow university- and city-recommended safety protocols, such as wearing a mask, practicing social distancing, and limiting unnecessary exposure to those who may be ill.
Adelphi University’s Fall 2020 plans
Adelphi University is taking every precaution to ensure students’ safety while on campus. Included in these precautions is completely shutting down campus on November 30, 2020, moving all classes and activities online for the remainder of the semester. Adelphi University will also close all residence halls on November 25, 2020. International students can get approval to stay in residence halls after the closing date for an additional fee.
The COVID-19 landscape is continuously changing. Adelphi’s reopening plans are flexible, so the university can respond to up-to-date information and data points as they relate to students’ health and safety.
According to Adelphi’s website, the current plan is based on:
Safely and responsibly reopening Adelphi’s campus according to state and department of health requirements
Continually monitoring health conditions
Containing potential transmission of the coronavirus
Contingency plans for the shutdown of in-person operations if ordered by the state due to widespread COVID-19 transmission
When it comes to the Adelphi student population, the university has made many adjustments to academic and student life on campus to keep everyone safe. Plans include:
A switch to online classes after Thanksgiving break on November 30, 2020.
All activities will also move online on November 30, 2020.
All residence halls will close on November 25, 2020, with a planned reopening on January 24, 2021.
Until then, students will have four options for taking classes: in person, online, hybrid (a combination of in-person classes and hybrid classes), and a hyflex option, which adds live streaming and recording to the hybrid model.
Until November 30, residence halls, dining areas, and libraries will have capacity restrictions and redesigned spaces that promote social distancing.
Students will use a mobile app to submit health check-ins daily.
Students will be required to wear facemasks and follow social distancing guidelines.
Crews will continuously clean all on-campus locations.
A newly created health and wellness office has been trained to handle any potential COVID-related illnesses, including care for sick students, contact tracing, and more.
Watch the Adelphi University restart plan overview video >>
For additional information regarding how COVID-19 will affect international students, or to learn more about health and safety plans this fall, refer to the Adelphi International Accelerator website.
Other ways to keep safe on campus
For students who live on campus, Adelphi has put together a master restart plan covering safety guidelines and rules, including:
Quick guides for specific areas and operations throughout campus
Good practices for all students: remember to wear a mask, observe social distancing requirements, and be sure to have a plan in place should you need to quarantine.
Remember to keep learning!
The coronavirus has disrupted the plans of university students all across the world. But that does not mean you have to put your education on hold until the pandemic is over. The most important thing is to make decisions that will keep you safe and keep moving forward, with your short- and long-term educational goals guiding your decisions.
“I’m staying positive because I realize that you cannot [remain] anxious because of the bad news,” Brexhultan said. “Otherwise, there is no way for us to concentrate on work, and to concentrate on learning and achieving our dreams.”
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