University moves to online instruction

Written By Dara Collins and Jordyn Hronec

Point Park University announced via an email from the Office of the President on Thursday, March 12 that all face-to-face classes will be cancelled March 13-17. Classes will resume March 18 via online instruction or another alternative form due to growing coronavirus, or COVID-19, concerns.

There are no presumptive positive or confirmed cases of COVID-19 on campus or in Allegheny County.

The university is not closing on-campus housing facilities or dining halls. The library and other on-campus facilities will remain open as well. All scheduled events at the Pittsburgh Playhouse are being evaluated on a case-by-case basis, however the show “Pippin,” which is set to open on March 13, will continue as scheduled.

All students involved in an internship, co-op and student teaching should adhere to the original schedule at their placement site.

The university advised all students to follow social distancing and hygiene guidelines put forth by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

This announcement comes a day after the cancellation of Pittsburgh’s annual St. Patrick’s Day parade, and multiple western Pennsylvania universities announced they would be moving to online instruction on Wednesday, March 11. The list includes:

  • Carlow University
  • Chatham University
  • Duquesne University
  • University of Pittsburgh
  • Carnegie Mellon University
  • Robert Morris University
  • Slippery Rock University
  • California University of Pennsylvania
  • Westminster College
  • Edinboro University

Other universities transitioning to online-only as of Wednesday include Pennsylvania State University, West Virginia University, Ohio State University and Kent State University.

In Pennsylvania, there are 14 presumptive positive cases of COVID-19 and two confirmed cases, according to the latest information from the Pennsylvania Department of Health.

The counties affected include Bucks (2), Delaware (1), Monroe (2), Montgomery (9), Philadelphia (1) and Wayne (1). All counties are on the eastern side of the state.

The Pennsylvania Department of Health advises individuals to cover coughs and sneezes in their elbows, wash hands with soap and water for 20 seconds minimum or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water is not available. Surfaces should also be cleaned frequently.

If an individual is feeling ill, they are advised to stay home.