The University of Missouri is temporarily shifting most of its in-person undergraduate and graduate courses to remote learning for the last three weeks of instruction, including final exams, following Thanksgiving break.
The move is to help the region manage a surge in COVID-19 cases.
Mun Choi, MU chancellor, and UM System president said in a press release, “While our experts say that MU students have not presented a direct burden to the local hospitals because they have not needed hospitalization, we are all are members of the broader community. And as the community strives to gain control of the virus, a temporary thinning of the student population is helpful.”
Boone County alone added 1,101 cases in the past seven days, as compared to having 8,040 total since the pandemic began.
“Having capacity at our area medical facilities, including our hospitals, is an important piece of our plans to ensure student health and safety,” Choi said. “This temporary shift will ultimately support our community and help ensure the right resources are available to support our students.”
The university also announced it will share resources as they are available to support the community’s needs, including contact tracers, case investigators, and medical professionals.
Officials plan to open the 2021 spring semester on Jan. 19 with face-to-face instruction.