Aug 18, 2020 - Health

Michigan State University to go online-only for fall semester

Michigan State University student union building in 2018.

Michigan State University student union building in 2018. Photo: Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Michigan State University will hold online-only classes for its fall semester, university President Samuel Stanley announced Tuesday, just days before students were set to move onto campus.

Why it matters: Michigan State is the third major university this week to revert to fully online classes for the upcoming term. The University of Notre Dame and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill both announced online-only classes following spikes in coronavirus cases.

What he's saying: "[G]iven the current status of the virus in our country — particularly what we are seeing at other institutions as they re-populate their campus communities — it has become evident to me that, despite our best efforts and strong planning, it is unlikely we can prevent widespread transmission of COVID-19 between students if our undergraduates return to campus," Stanley said in a letter to students.

  • "So, effective immediately, we are asking undergraduate students who planned to live in our residence halls this fall to stay home and continue their education with MSU remotely. While a vast majority of our classes already were offered in remote formats, we will work the next two weeks to transition those that were in-person or hybrid to remote formats."
  • "Right now, we want to make sure our students, faculty and staff have the ability to change any needed plans as we work toward a Sept. 2 start date for remote undergraduate education."

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