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North Carolina Central University starts fall semester in-person as other North Carolina universities transition to virtual classes

DURHAM, N.C. (WTVD) — NCCU students begin fall semester Monday while hoping they will not be exposed to COVID-19.

“Yeah, I’m ready to come back. I’m trying to get away from home,” Colby Roberson, a sophomore at the university tells ABC 11.

On Sunday, the sophomore, a Washington D.C. native, returned to his campus home under a nationwide pandemic.

“I’m just going to follow precautions and make sure I’m always keeping myself at a safe distance, always wash my hands,” Colby said.

He is not too concerned about moving into his dorm suite with three other roommates. However, his mother doesn’t feel the same way.

“I think it’s a little too close for comfort. I’m still a little nervous about it,” said Barbara Roberson. “I think they should cancel the classes at least through the first semester. I think students should have stayed home, and took online classes until there is something that makes it a little safer.”

Currently, NCCU has five students, seven employees and one contractor have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, between July 1 and Aug. 19.

NC Central’s move-in day comes just as undergraduate students at other UNC System schools, like East Carolina University transition to online classes for the rest of the semester.

FULL CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE

Today, NC State University reporting two new COVID-19 clusters at a fraternity and sorority house bringing the total number of clusters to 11. UNC-Chapel Hill also announcing a new outbreak bringing its total clusters to 10.

“I was shocked,” said Jada Sylvester, a freshman at NCCU. “I just hoped we wouldn’t be next.”

Sylvester and her friends from Elizabeth City just moved into their dorms at NCCU. Like Colby, they too are not worried.

“Just keep my mask on and stay in my dorm,” stated Tiara Holley.

Sylvester, Holley and Cody are hoping the university’s safety and social distance guidelines will reduce the viruses spread.

As a precaution, NC Central set up temperature check readers and hand sanitizing stations throughout campus. Individuals are required to take a daily survey before coming to the University or leaving their dorm. Classroom sizes have been reduced and masks are required at all times.

Cody’s mom is praying there’s no outbreak at her son’s school

“I would turn right back around and come back and get him,” Barbara Roberson stated.

UNC Charlotte will start it’s fall semester Sept. 7 but it will be remote.

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