I am disappointed that Illinois State University still lacks in implementing proper testing for the entire campus community.

If athletes and athletic staff are able to be tested periodically through the semester, why can’t the rest of the student population?

As someone who is lucky enough to have a job through university athletics and be tested once a month, I feel for the rest of the student population. I’m angry for everyone else who isn’t getting tested properly throughout the year.

Every single student coming back to campus should have been required to be tested upon their return and then be tested at least once or twice a month.

Asking or recommending is not going to push most students to be tested. If someone isn’t showing symptoms, they are more than likely not going to get tested because they feel it would be a waste of a test for someone who needs it.

Surveillance testing is going to be somewhat helpful. But my problem with surveillance testing is they will randomly test a small portion of the student population until the end of December.

Student Health Services is only testing symptomatic cases at this time, but what about the asymptomatic cases that are going to go undetected and spread like wildfire?

A few blocks up the road from ISU, Illinois Wesleyan University required students to be tested when coming back to campus. In Champaign, the University of Illinois is testing students twice a week.

So why can’t ISU find the means to have proper testing for students?

And yes, members of the Redbird community can go out to the Interstate Center to be tested whenever they want. But not everyone has a car nor the time to take a bus out to the testing site. And why should they when the university should be providing testing for the campus community?

ISU is a ticking time bomb for an outbreak of the coronavirus. And maybe I’m wrong and it will go better than what I think since most classes were switched online two weeks before the start of fall semester.

But the thing is even with classes online, students are still living on campus. What is housing doing besides de-densifying and giving the option to live off campus? Are they cleaning the shared bathrooms more thoroughly and more than once a day? How are masks and social distancing in the residence halls going to be enforced?

There will be students who stay at their permanent address with their family but what about those of us living in apartments? We are stuck paying for a lease when we could be at home saving money.

I want nothing more than to spend my senior year of college experiencing my lasts on campus just like I experienced my firsts when I stepped foot on campus three years ago. But, sadly, that’s not the reality I can have.

I know I am at least one person who will follow the guidelines, wear my mask and do everything I can to not get it nor spread the virus.

ISU needs to implement a more serious and strategic testing plan. They need to be testing the campus community once to twice a month in order to really mitigate the spread on campus and throughout the BloNo area.

GRACE KINNICUTT is News Editor for The Vidette. She can be contacted at gkinnic@ilstu.edu Follow Kinnicutt on Twitter at @GKinnicutt 

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