This time of year, campuses are usually bustling with students as the fall quarter begins. But this year will be unlike any other as most University of California campuses keep students remote, with a few exceptions.
The first day of instruction for UCLA, UC Irvine and UC Riverside is Thursday.
UCLA originally planned to allow 5,000 students to return to residence halls and offer 8% of classes on campus. However, public health guidelines in response to the COVID-19 pandemic caused the university to nix that plan.
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Now, UCLA, UC Irvine and UC Riverside will conduct remote-only instruction for the fall quarter.
One exception is a limited number of in-person courses to train students for essential workforce positions. The UC system says in-person classes in health and medicine, emergency services, social work, the sciences and engineering are necessary and cannot be conducted remotely.
UC Riverside will house about 900 students compared to the usual 4,200. Students were required to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test two weeks before move-in, which happened over the weekend. Students are in single-dorm rooms and school officials say testing will be conducted regularly.
"We're in a situation where, you're in a class of 30 students, 29 of them want to go back to face-to-face instruction...but if you, because of your own personal health or the health and vulnerability of those in your household, think that you can't be safe in that environment, you deserve a safe option," said UC Riverside Chancellor Kim Wilcox.
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At UC Irvine, weekly COVID-19 testing is already in place for those who choose to live in dorms.
Classes at UC Irvine will be remote, but about 7,000 students in need of housing will live on campus.