Utah State University senior Anny Spencer was on campus with her husband when they received the call. They had been exposed to the coronavirus, and they had to quarantine immediately.
They went home and started trying to keep track of everyone else they came into contact with.
“They make it seem like it’s a pretty straightforward situation, but it wasn’t that way for us,” Spencer said. “We didn’t even think about our classes initially. I had been to the dentist, to campus, to work that day so it suddenly became this potential that I had exposed others as well.”
Because neither of them were showing symptoms, they couldn’t get tested, but they were still required to isolate for the 14 days. Luckily, Spencer and her husband are only enrolled in online and broadcasted classes, but Spencer did have to make arrangements with her on-campus job.
“Everyone at work was helpful about getting me set up at home, especially since they’ve been planning situations like mine all summer,” Spencer said. “My husband was less fortunate and hasn’t been able to work during all of this.”
A symptomatic friend came to visit the apartment of USU sophomore Amelia Jaggi, and soon, every one of her roommates were sick.
After testing positive, Jaggi was sent a PDF letter to email to her professors.
“I just sent it to them and let them know that I wouldn’t be in class,” Jaggi said. “They were super accommodating. All my classes have an online option anyways, so that made it easier for me.”
Jaggi’s roommate, USU junior Rachel Hansen, had a similar experience working with her professors. She was able to attend her in-person class on Zoom, and her professor was very accommodating.
“I just told her the situation when I got on Zoom, and she was like, ‘Oh no, I hope you’re feeling better’ and was very kind about it, very understanding,” Hansen said. “She let me know about the COVID CARE Team and was like, ‘let them help you.’”
The COVID CARE Team provides support and resources to students who have to isolate. They reach out to students who have filled out the COVID-19 questionnaire and check in with students at least once a week during their isolation.
Hansen had purchased a textbook from the Campus Store that she needed to pick up. After testing positive, she knew she wouldn’t be able to go on campus to get it. She reached out to the COVID CARE Team.
“They were actually super helpful. I filled out the survey and they called me,” Hansen said.
She told the team about her textbook and they delivered it to her door in only a few hours.
“It was so nice,” Hansen said. “I was so grateful.”
If students feel sick with the symptoms of COVID-19, even mild ones, they must self-isolate and seek testing.
“Anyone with one of six symptoms consistent with COVID-19 should get tested,” said Utah Department of Health deputy director Nate Checketts. “These symptoms include a fever, cough, shortness of breath, muscle aches, sore throat or a loss in your sense of taste or smell.”
Students who have shown symptoms and filled out the COVID-19 questionnaire can be tested at the USU Health Center.
Students who fill out the questionnaire will also receive assistance from the COVID CARE Team.
Darcy Ritchie is a second-year journalism student at Utah State from Idaho Falls, Idaho. Outside of writing for the Statesman, she loves to DJ for Aggie Radio, eat french bread in the Walmart parking lot, and tweet.