COVID-19 was detected in the wastewater from Broadway and Wien, and two COVID cases were identified in the Mudd Building.
Residents of Broadway Residence Hall and Wien Residence Hall were informed in an email this afternoon from Melanie J. Bernitz, Senior Vice President and Medical Director of Columbia Health, and Cristen Kromm, Dean of Undergraduate Student Life, that wastewater testing, which is part of Columbia’s enhanced campus testing program, detected COVID-19 in Broadway Residence Hall and Wien Residence Hall.
Residents were informed that they must get a COVID test tomorrow and that if they do not, they will receive a Compact violation. Any residents who do not complete a test tomorrow will be required to quarantine in their rooms until they complete their test on Friday and receive a negative result.
The email also stressed the importance of complying with the testing requirement, which the email stated is essential to the University’s ability to house students on campus, and reminded students that violating the Compact will result in a Dean’s Discipline process.
On April 2, Principal Investigators and Department Chairs located in the Mudd Building were informed via email that two unconnected individuals who later tested positive for COVID accessed the building. One person accessed the first and second floors, and the other accessed the basement. The second floor of Mudd is home to the Columbia Makerspace, while the basement is used by a number of undergraduate engineering clubs.
Bwog is in the process of verifying any connection between the wastewater positive test and the Mudd COVID cases identified on April 2 and will update this post as necessary.
Email to Broadway and Wien residents from Dean Kromm and Director Bernitz, sent at 4:29 pm EST on April 5, 2021:
Dear [Student Name],
The presence of Covid-19 has been detected in the wastewater of both Broadway Residence Hall & Wien Residence Hall through Columbia’s enhanced campus testing program. You should have already scheduled a Covid-19 test for tomorrow, since Tuesday is Broadway Hall & Wien Hall’s assigned testing day. All Broadway & Wien residents currently on campus must be tested tomorrow.
- If you have not scheduled a test for tomorrow, please schedule one immediately. If there is no availability in Lerner, keep checking as cancellations may occur and capacity is added where possible.
- Biweekly testing is still required regardless of vaccination status.
- If you do not test tomorrow, you will receive a Compact violation.
- Additionally, if you do not test tomorrow, you must immediately quarantine in your room in Broadway Hall or Wien Hall until you complete your required test on Friday, April 9 and receive a negative result.
- In order to avoid crowds at the testing site, walk-ins and late arrivals are not permitted, so be sure to schedule and arrive on time.
PREPARING FOR QUARANTINE
- Columbia Health has provided a quarantine guide to help you prepare.
- Stay in your room, and do not leave except to be tested or when otherwise directed by a medical professional.
We cannot underscore enough the importance of your full compliance with COVID-19 testing. The ability to house students in our residence halls is contingent upon your compliance and that of your classmates, as well as guidance from public health and government officials. When a student chooses not to follow Columbia’s requirements, they jeopardize both the well-being of the community and their own privilege of living on campus.
Students who violate the Columbia Community Health Compact and the testing requirement will be referred to
Dean’s Discipline, which may result in the loss of campus housing.
Thank you for your attention to this urgent matter. Please contact Columbia Health directly if you have any medical questions or concerns.
Melanie J. Bernitz
Senior Vice President and Medical Director, Columbia Health
Dean of Undergraduate Student Life
Wien via Bwog Archives