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Oakland University moves classes online as COVID-19 surges

The Detroit News

In response to the rising rate of COVID-19 infection in Oakland County and statewide, Oakland University is moving almost all classes online starting Monday.

"A small subset of courses for which content and activities cannot be delivered online — such as labs, lab-based research and field experiences — may continue to meet following the university’s infection prevention guidelines," the school said in a statement posted on its website.

Hillcrest Hall at Oakland University in Auburn Hills on Mar. 30, 2020. Four-hundred rooms at Hillcrest Hall have been cleaned and prepared for Beaumont Health Care workers to have lodging.

In addition to moving coursework online, OU is limiting building hours as well. Academic buildings will be open only from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. weekdays, and hours at Kresge Library are to be reduced as well.

On-campus housing will remain open, with students asked to wear masks and practice social distancing. Food service will be "condensed."

"The majority of student support services will be offered remotely along with limited in-person appointments on campus," the OU statement said. "All extracurricular activities will occur in an on-line format."

Michigan colleges and universities have been reducing or ending in-person classes and making other changes as the state's COVID-19 cases rise to record-setting levels.

Last week, the University of Michigan announced it would largely clear out undergraduate residence halls for the winter semester because of the surge in cases.

Michigan reported 50 new outbreaks of COVID-19 at the state's pre-K-12 schools and higher-education institutions Monday, with the largest number of cases — 18 — at Hillsdale College.

In addition, there are 143 ongoing outbreaks at pre-K-12 schools and colleges, including 15 cumulative cases at OU.