Chancellor Philip Dubois of UNC Charlotte has pledged the university’s full support to county and state response efforts to the coronavirus pandemic and may open some residence halls to COVID-19 patients under an agreement with Mecklenburg County, per a release this morning.
“We are in an international crisis. We are being asked to live, study and work differently,” Dubois wrote. “We must also think differently about our responsibilities to each other and the larger community during this time, which means sometimes stepping forward to serve the Charlotte region in new ways.”
Dubois says it may become necessary for the Holshouser, Hunt, Laurel, Levin, Sanford and Scott residence halls in South Village to be used in conjunction with initiatives to combat the virus and has contacted students to retrieve any belongings that have been left behind. The university has been granted exception to the stay-at-home order and is using a scheduling plan to practice social distancing during the relocation process. Only residents of the specified dorms have been given permission to return to campus.
“I appreciate [our students’ and their families’] understanding and fast response during this extraordinary situation,” Dubois wrote. “I also want to recognize the staff members who are working around the clock to ready the campus should it be needed, on top of the many needs of our employees, students and families.”
Mecklenburg County has emerged as one of the largest hot spots for the coronavirus pandemic in the state. It has 465 of the state’s 1,500 cases, as of noon Wednesday. Wake County follows with about 200 cases, and Durham County has roughly 130.
County emergency officials contacted the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority about utilizing Bojangles’ Coliseum and the Charlotte Convention Center for additional medical space, according to reports from WFAE.