Category: university

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Off-campus “super-spreader” event linked to 125 virus cases at Monmouth University

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An off-campus “super-spreader” event has led to 125 coronavirus cases at Monmouth University in New Jersey, the university’s president said in an open letter to students.

Through extensive contact tracing, the rise in cases was linked to a single event held about two weeks ago, Monmouth president Patrick Leahy wrote Friday. This event was held off-campus, although school officials did not specify what kind of event it was, only calling it a “social gathering.” 

Since August 24, Monmouth has reported over 319 coronavirus cases. According to the school’s COVID-19 dashboard, only 96 of those cases are considered active, while the other 223 account for recovered cases. 

The school has not yet determined whether fully remote learning will continue for the rest of the fall semester. In his open letter, Leahy emphasized how important testing and social distancing was to the status of the fall semester. 

“I cannot emphasize enough the critical importance of compliance with Monmouth University COVID-19 protocols and State of New Jersey health and safety measures to effectively protect the Monmouth community,” Leahy wrote on Friday. “The future of our fall semester will rest, in large part, on the ability of everyone to follow these necessary protocols.”

These new cases are a part of New Jersey’s increase in weekly positive cases. According to Johns Hopkins University, the state had at least 469 new cases reported in the last seven days, bringing Jersey’s total case count to 214,097. 

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Journalism student sues ASU, citing free speech rights

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ASU’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication in downtown Phoenix. (Photo: The Republic)

An Arizona State University journalism student is suing the school after she says she was removed from leading the student-run radio station over a controversial tweet.

The lawsuit claims that the university violated Rae’Lee Klein’s First Amendment rights to free expression by refusing to allow her to continue as station manager of Blaze Radio because of her tweet.

The university, in a statement to The Arizona Republic on Tuesday, refuted that claim, saying, “Klein’s conduct in the aftermath of the tweet — rather than the tweet itself — meant that she was no longer able to perform the job for which she was hired.”

But Klein said she was first scolded about her tweet and later scolded for her media appearances and conversations with elected officials as her situation gained attention. 

“They were first upset by my free speech and now they’re upset that I’ve become this cause célèbre for free speech, so it’s just disappointing to see them keep taking the same stance and not want to work or correct the situation,” Klein told The Republic. 

Jack Wilenchik, Klein’s attorney, filed the complaint in U.S. District Court on Monday against ASU, the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication and Kristin Gilger, Cronkite interim dean.

Klein faced swift backlash from within and outside her radio station after a tweet she posted in the aftermath of police shooting Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on Aug. 23. Klein shared a New York Post article with graphic details from a police report accusing Blake of sexual assault.

The Aug. 29 tweet, deleted later, was captioned, “Always more to the story, folks. Please read this article to get the background of Jacob Blake’s warrant. You’ll be

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Amy Coney Barrett’s fellow faculty members at the University of Notre Dame called on her to delay her nomination until after the election

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Joanna Bator looking at the camera: Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on the second day of her Supreme Court confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill on October 13, 2020 in Washington, DC. Samuel Corum/Getty Images


© Samuel Corum/Getty Images
Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on the second day of her Supreme Court confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill on October 13, 2020 in Washington, DC. Samuel Corum/Getty Images

  • A group of faculty members at the University of Notre have called on Judge Amy Coney Barrett, President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, to for “halt” her nomination till after the November election. 
  • Barrett’s co-workers said while her confirmation is assured, it comes at a polarized time in the country. 
  • Confirmation hearings began this week in the Senate. 
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Faculty members at the University of Notre Dame called on judge Amy Coney Barrett, Judge Amy Coney Barrett, President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, to “halt” her nomination till after the November election, in an open letter. 

“We congratulate you on your nomination to the United States Supreme Court. An appointment to the Court is the crowning achievement of a legal career and speaks to the commitments you have made throughout your life. And while we are not pundits, from what we read your confirmation is all but assured,” the letter read.

“That is why it is vital that you issue a public statement calling for a halt to your nomination process until after the November presidential election,” the letter continued.

Barrett was nominated by Trump to fill the seat of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg who died last month. 

After Ginsburg’s death, Congressional Democrats denounced the idea of nominating and confirming a new justice until after the November elections, arguing that the seat should remain empty until a new president is elected.

Following the death of Justice Antonin Scalia in February 2016, Senate Republicans refused to hold hearings for a nominee chosen

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University warns about college students trying to contract COVID-19 to make money donating plasma with antibodies

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Brigham Young University-Idaho warned on Monday about accounts of college students “intentionally” trying to contract COVID-19 in order to make money by donating plasma with antibodies. 

The Idaho university issued a statement saying officials were “deeply troubled” by the alleged behavior and “is actively seeking evidence of such conduct among our student body.”

Students who are determined to have intentionally exposed themselves or others to the virus will be immediately suspended from the university and may be permanently dismissed,” the university stated.

“The contraction and spread of COVID-19 is not a light matter,” the statement continued. “Reckless disregard for health and safety will inevitably lead to additional illness and loss of life in our community.”

University officials noted that they had previously cautioned last month that if Idaho or Madison County continue to experience surges in cases, the university may have to switch to fully online learning. 

The release also encouraged students who are participating in this behavior to consult financial and mental health resources, saying, “There is never a need to resort to behavior that endangers health or safety in order to make ends meet.”

Brigham Young University-Idaho has confirmed 109 COVID-19 cases among students and 22 cases among employees.

The Food and Drug Administration permitted convalescent plasmas from COVID-19 survivors to be used as an emergency therapy for those with coronavirus. The FDA states that the plasma that has antibodies “may be effective in treating COVID-19 and that the known and potential benefits of the product outweigh the known and potential risks.”

Two potential plasma donation locations near the university are the Grifols Biomat USA Rexburg location and the BioLife Plasma Services, NPR reported. The first’s website says it gives donors $100 per visit and East Idaho News reported the latter provides $200 for each of the

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University staff angry that Covid teaching advice was ‘ignored’

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University staff are moving towards confronting their leaders after the revelation that the government’s scientific advisers called for teaching to move online at the start of the academic year last month.



a sign in front of a building: Photograph: Mike Egerton/PA


© Provided by The Guardian
Photograph: Mike Egerton/PA

University and College Union members at the University of Sheffield are the latest to call an emergency meeting after lodging a formal grievance, joining branches at the universities of Birmingham, Leeds and Warwick in dispute with their leadership over the handling of coronavirus outbreaks.

Other campus staff represented by Unison are said to be angry at having to deal with threats and abuse from frustrated students trapped in isolation.

An estimated 110 UK universities have reported cases of Covid-19 outbreaks, with around 15,000 students and staff infected so far, since the term began just four weeks ago on some campuses.

The University of Nottingham alone has reported 1,500 active cases among students at the end of last week, out of its 35,000 students enrolled, along with 20 members staff. The week before just 400 cases had been reported.

But concern over staff and students continuing to have face-to-face teaching while infection rates are rising has turned to anger after the release of documents from the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) committee, showing that three weeks ago it advised that all universities should revert to online teaching.



a sign in front of a building: The University of Nottingham reported 1,500 active cases among students at the end of last week.


© Photograph: Mike Egerton/PA
The University of Nottingham reported 1,500 active cases among students at the end of last week.

Sage’s package of measures to contain Covid-19 included a recommendation: “All university and college teaching to be online unless face-to-face teaching is absolutely essential,” until the prevalence of the virus subsides.

Jo Grady, the UCU’s general secretary, said: “Ministers were given clear recommendations on how to stem the spread of the virus before term

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