Students who remain on campus amidst the coronavirus pandemic face reduced university resources and widespread closure of common spaces as Boston University enters its first week of remote learning in response to the spread of the coronavirus.
Click on any building to see its hours. Residence Life offices also included.
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The Fitness and Recreation center and Fresh Fuel at Granby Commons in BU Hillel are closed, dining halls hours are reduced and dormitories are restricted in terms of hours and gatherings, all until April 13.
The George Sherman Union, including Mugar Memorial Library, will remain open during this time.
While the Hillel dining hall is shut down, the Warren Towers, Marciano Commons and West Campus dining halls will now open at 10 a.m. and close at 9 p.m., according to the Dining Services website. Students with dietary restrictions can place orders online by emailing Avi Foint, a residence dining room director, at firstname.lastname@example.org 24 hours prior to pick-up at Warren Towers.
In light of Boston Mayor Martin Walsh’s ban on in-restaurant dining, there will be no self-service options and all food will be placed in to-go containers in the dining halls. More detailed account of changes and more information on other dining locations on campus can be found on the Dining Services website.
In an email to students from Residence Life, Director of BU Housing Nishim Kashyap wrote that students will be able to swipe into their own residence at any time, but will only be able to swipe into Warren Towers from 7 a.m. to 2 a.m., and will not have access to other residences as no guests are allowed in residences during this time.
The university also canceled all formal gatherings, such as floor meetings, and warned against informal gatherings in the email. Residence Life offices will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and students can call the numbers posted outside their residence life office at any time for emergencies.
Colin Riley, a BU spokesperson, said that right now, the university currently does not plan to have students leave dorms as nearby universities, such as Northeastern University and Harvard University, have insisted.
“We are dealing with the reality of a large number of students who do not have the ability to travel home in a short period of time and return,” Riley said, “if we do make the decision to [resume in-person classes] through the end of the semester.”
Colleges within BU have been forced to make changes, including the movement of academic advising appointments to a digital format. Both the College of Communication and College of Arts and Sciences have implemented these policies.
Some buildings, such as the College of Arts and Sciences, are still open to students, but the university advises against visiting any college building for non-essential reasons.
Hillel will host virtual meditations throughout the week and Shabbat dinners, according to an email they sent out March 16. The building is closed to students, but the email said Hillel is open to Zoom, Skype or FaceTime with students.
In a joint email to students from President Robert Brown and Jean Morrison, university provost and chief academic officer, the university recommended students practice social distancing if on-campus, and prohibited gatherings of 10 or more people. If anyone begins to experience flu-like symptoms or feel ill, the university asked that they contact Student Health Services.
Riley said that staying safe and healthy is key at this time.
“The health of everyone is the most important thing,” Riley said. “And everything you can do to protect yourself also protects others.”
Riley said Brown should release his decision to extend or discontinue remote learning past April 13 by the end of March.
Angel Ma, a junior in the Questrom School of Business, said she thinks the university has handled the situation well so far.
“I think that in comparison to other universities, BU is providing a lot more accommodations and flexibility, being one of the few universities that haven’t kicked students off of campus yet,” Ma said. “With that being said, I hope that the university can work to provide students with more detailed updates about situations on campus or in areas where BU students are more populated.”