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Merrimack College Temporarily Closes Monican Hall

Bri Alberghini

Editor in Chief

On Wednesday, September 22, Merrimack College notified the community that they have identified five students who tested positive for Covid-19 who live in Monican Hall. Using predetermined quarantine procedures, Merrimack made the decision to require all students living in Monican Hall to temporarily quarantine until the college could better understand the potential number of students affected in the building. 

Prior to all residents leaving, every student got tested for Covid-19 to ensure the safety of the Merrimack College community. Later in the evening, the Merrimack College Community was notified that an additional 11 Monican Hall residents tested positive for Covid-19 as of 5:00 p.m. Any students, faculty, or staff identified as a close contact of a positive case for Covid-19 can expect to be contacted by the college’s contact tracing team.

Merrimack reminded everyone in their communications to the college community that they have built a robust surveillance testing system, and it is detecting exactly what it is designed to detect. Merrimack consistently maintains an almost 100 percent testing compliance rate.

Merrimack is requiring all residential students who are not currently in quarantine or isolation, and who normally have a scheduled weekly test on Wednesdays, Thursdays, or Fridays, to be tested today, Wednesday 23, 2020. 

This past week (September 15-21) the college tested 4,540 students, faculty, and staff, and had 20 positive cases. This means that Merrimack has a  negative testing rate of 99.56 percent and positivity rate is well below 1 percent.

“We are very sorry this is happening to our Monican Hall students,” Merrimack said in an email, “but we have these policies and procedures in place in order to respond to situations such as this as well as to do our best to protect others.”

“Monican is empty and it will be systematically and professionally cleaned and disinfected before anyone moves back in,” the college said in an email to campus.

The Merrimack College community as a whole is doing an amazing job at making sure that we keep each other safe. The college urges students to continue to wash their hands frequently, wear a mask, and social distance when possible.

Stay safe, Warriors!