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Hartwick College Goes Remote Amid Oneonta COVID-19 Outbreak

BINGHAMTON, NY (WSKG) — Hartwick College in Oneonta announced on Tuesday it will switch to all-remote instruction for the next 14 days. The decision was made after large clusters of COVID-19 shutdown in-person learning at SUNY Oneonta over the weekend.

As of Tuesday afternoon, 245 students at SUNY Oneonta tested positive for COVID-19.

Hartwick College has reported only two positive student COVID-19 cases so far. In a statement, Hartwick College President Margaret L. Drugovich said the college is closing as a precautionary measure.

“Because of the sudden and steep increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in the Oneonta community, we have decided to commence remote instruction only,” Drugovich said. “Though only two Hartwick students have tested positive for the COVID-19 virus, we are taking this step as a precautionary measure to protect the health of all members of our campus-based community.”

Drugovich encouraged students and staff to take advantage of the three state-run rapid testing sites set to open in Oneonta Wednesday. Over the weekend, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo deployed a SWAT team to SUNY Oneonta to contain the spread of the virus.

Campus facilities and dining halls will remain open to students living on Hartwick College’s campus for the duration of the two weeks. All students and employees will continue to be tested for COVID-19 every two weeks.

According to the state’s guidance on college campus infection rates, colleges will be required to return to remote learning for at least two weeks if 100 cases of COVID-19 are diagnosed or 5 percent of that institution’s population tests positive.