Citing a recent surge of COVID-19 cases across the country and in the Volunteer State, Tennessee State University (TSU) recently announced that it will continue to put COVID-19 safety protocols in place for the upcoming fall semester beginning August 22nd.

TSU cites in a press release that Davidson County had an uptick in confirmed COVID cases, with an average of 2,842 cases within a seven-day span, according to the Tennessee Department of Health. The average positive COVID-19 test rate for Tennessee is 40.4 percent, according to data collected by The Mayo Clinic.

“We have put various protocols in place to assist individuals with safety to minimize the spread on campus,” Dr. Curtis Johnson, TSU associate vice president and chief of staff, said in a statement. “We will continue working with faculty and staff to have the necessary PPEs (personal protection equipment) available for students attending classes and for all offices.”

Despite not having a mask or vaccination mandate outlined by state law, the university is “strongly encouraging the campus family to wear masks, practice social distancing and to get vaccinated and boosted.”

Frank Stevenson, associate vice president of student affairs and dean of students, said the university will continue abiding by CDC protocol for the upcoming semester and will provide the COVID-19 vaccine to students at their requests.

“We are asking all students to be both vaccinated and boosted,” Stevenson said, noting that students are required to report COVID-19 positive results to student affairs.

According to the TSU press release, students who test positive for COVID-19 are placed in an area identified as IQ, or isolation and quarantine zone where they receive “round the clock” service, including a health professional, meal service delivered three times a day, laundry service, and medication if needed.

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Kaitlin Housler is a reporter at The Tennessee Star and The Star News Network.
Photo “TSU COVID Safety Protocols” by Tennessee State University.