wsls logo

Roanoke College student tested for coronavirus, college moving to online classes

Three students are in isolation off-campus

Local colleges, universities cancel classes amid coronavirus concerns
Local colleges, universities cancel classes amid coronavirus concerns

SALEM, Va. – Like many other colleges and universities in Virginia, Roanoke College is suspending face-to-face classes amid coronavirus concerns.

At this time, there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 on campus; however, three students are in isolation off-campus out of an abundance of caution, according to the college.

Roanoke College student being tested for coronavirus
Roanoke College student being tested for coronavirus

Two students traveled to Washington, D.C., and one to Europe over spring break and may have been exposed to the virus.

After the college consulted the Virginia Department of Health, one student was tested for the coronavirus, the results are still pending.

A Roanoke College official told 10 News on Wednesday that the student who was tested came to the student health center on campus on Tuesday. The student lives off-campus and is isolated there, per Virginia Department of Health recommendations.

Officials say the student is in isolation, which the CDC defines as a situation that “separates sick people with a contagious disease from people who are not sick.” This is different from the CDC’s definition of quarantine, which is a situation that “separates and restricts the movement of people who were exposed to a contagious disease to see if they become sick.”

As part of the college’s response to the coronavirus, President Michael C. Maxey and the cabinet have determined that in-person classes will be suspended beginning on Thursday.

Classes will be taught online until at least April 3. Professors will contact their students about the start of online classes by Tuesday, March 17.

The plan is for in-person classes to resume April 6, the college will continue to evaluate whether to extend the suspension.

All students should make arrangements to leave the residence halls no later than March 15 at 6 p.m.

Those who cannot leave by Sunday evening, are asked to contact your area coordinator or the Residence Life & Housing office at or at 540-375-2308.

Although classes won’t meet on campus during the suspension, the college will remain open and operational.

About the Author:

Jeff Williamson arrived at WSLS 10 in March 2016.