Stony Brook University freshman Jeremy Kri is pleased with the small number of sick students, as the COVID-19 outbreak is widespread in and near university campuses across the country. However, the trade-off is a lonely introduction to the social life of the campus.
“I’m alone,” said Kuri, 18, of Yonkers. He lives in a suite with an upper class person, but no freshman roommates have ever appeared on campus.
Most days he eats alone and walks alone on campus. The dormitory lounge is empty. The basketball courts are closed, but he is running a petition to open them.
The University of Long Island avoided an outbreak that closed campuses across the country, but Stony Brook had 24 coronavirus cases as of Wednesday. — Strict compliance with COVID-19 rules exceeds that of some students. Face-to-face classes and dormitories at some schools, including SUNY Oneonta, as videos of maskless and crowded parties are available online from the University of California to Cornell University, with increasing positive test results. It has been forced to close.
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo said the outbreak of Oneonta in late August-684 was positive as of Thursday and three are currently quarantined or quarantined-caused a rise in cases up to Long Island. Suggested that there is a possibility.
Some psychologists have questioned the wisdom of reopening college campuses in high-infection areas.
Universities in Long Island have a hybrid schedule and many classes are taught remotely. In Stony Brook, 81% of classes are remote. At Long Island University, most are face-to-face.
The outbreak of Oneonta was attributed to a large party, causing the wrath of Cuomo, who deployed a “SWAT team” of investigators and contact tracers to stop the spread of the infection. “College is a canary in a coal mine,” he said. Oneonta has suspended some students due to their actions.
“It is destined to put college students in a situation where they expect them to exercise their restraints accurately in the least well-prepared situations,” said Emily Berkeley Levenson, an assistant professor at Hofstra University. It was. ..
Berkeley Levenson, a specialist in developmental cognitive neuroscience, said the brains of adolescents and emerging adults are less developed than those of older people. She said that the brain system that manages basic motives, including the desire to socialize, is very sensitive at that age, and the parts that control long-term planning and impulse control mature later. is.
“Beyond the urgent desire for a long-term plan, the long-term plan is not always successful. The reward system is very powerful,” Berkeley Levenson said.
She said she was exercising more restraint than most students normally needed and most often adhered to the rules, but “it takes a little bit of time to make a major outbreak. Only. At some level, we are looking for trouble. “
For example, at Adelphi University in Garden City, “positive cases and small clusters of quarantines were the result of off-campus rallies,” said spokeswoman Taylor Damian. Since August, a total of 28 COVID-19-positive cases have been confirmed in students, 2 of which are 20.
The university suspended and even expelled students who significantly violated the rules for large group gatherings. According to university officials, several Stony Brook students have been temporarily suspended from housing just to discuss hosting a party.
Dr. Gabriel A. Carlson, a professor of psychiatry and pediatrics at Stony Brook University’s Renaissance School of Medicine, said it must be immediate to be effective. Carlson is also chairman of the American Academy of Youth Psychiatry, and the possibility that teens and young adults may decide to break the protocol to prevent COVID-19 infection is a risk worth seeing at this time. Said that.
“Risk assessment in their heads [is]”The odds I’m going to get it are low, and the odds I’m going to get very sick are low …. The odds of something terrible at this party are lower than the odds of fun I’m about to enjoy.” Told.
“For people whose frontal lobes haven’t reached full maturity, they need results right now, just as they need payoffs right now,” Carlson added. “Threat something that may not happen takes a decoy from the threat.”
“No one wants to go home”
The Student Newspaper’s August opinion piece, The Statesman, 21-year-old Samantha Lange of Stony Brook, wanted students to act to avoid infectious diseases, while those who broke the rules might. He wrote that he understood why it wasn’t.
“For college students, pretending that COVID-19 can’t be fatal is easier than dealing with the psychological and emotional stress of the potential damage the virus can do to someone,” Lange said. Is writing. I’m from Wheatley Heights. “I’m not stupid and selfish, those students [who broke protocols] I was just dealing with avoidance. “
Now, a few weeks after the fall semester, she sees many people neglecting vigilance, she said. “Many people on campus are doing what they want to do, not what they should do. They say,” If you get it, you’ll be almost asymptomatic, as many young people do. ” Say and rationalize. I’m afraid to come up with an alternative, so I understand where it comes from. “
She said Stony Brook was something never known before. Close friends may dating without masks or relax their security with a tight circle of friends that duplicates the family pods that have protected them for the past few months.
“From what I found by talking to my peers, people seem to be much less worried about themselves than their loved ones,” Lange said. When the pandemic worsened before the spring break of the previous semester, “I was more afraid of the campus because I didn’t want to bring my COVID home to my family.”
According to the university’s COVID-19 dashboard, the university found 24 positive cases after reopening, but only 4 out of more than 1,300 tests were recorded between September 10 and Wednesday. was.
SUNY Prime Minister Jim Maratra praised the low proportion of positive COVID cases in the state system on Thursday. 0.35% in the last 5 days and 0.77% of the nearly 100,000 tests conducted since the beginning of the semester.
At the Stony Brook campus, Yonkers freshman Kuri feels a little more hopeful after being placed in a small group of fellow freshmen in his only face-to-face class. “We’ve created group chats to allow them to chat,” he said, but added that it’s difficult to recognize them. “Every time I see them, they are in the mask.”
Maria Paradiso, a mathematics major who chairs the Student Government Association, said the addition of outdoor seating and virtual programming in Adelphi has made it safer for students to gather and interact. “I can’t speak to all of Adelphi’s students, but I think most of them understand the importance of staying safe,” she said.
On the Hofstra campus, students sprayed masks and hand sanitizers on the “health ambassador” man’s table and called on them to wear masks or stay socially distant. 107 in total Hofstra students and others have been diagnosed positive since August 1, and seven positive cases have been found on campus tests since Monday.
Andrew Adrian, 23, a graduate student in health care, manages about 75 ambassadors, and overall compliance is “quite good …. problems occur when people are very close to the outside.” This is the most obstructive place. People don’t. You need a mask outside to understand if you are within 6 feet of someone. “
“Everyone gets points. It’s just a common goal to go through the semester. Everyone wants to go home,” said Sarael Buzadhi, a 24-year-old fellow ambassador to a public health graduate student. There is no such thing. “