UConn students reevaluate holiday plans in wake of modified quarantine

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Werth Tower is one of the many residential buildings at UConn. Many UConn students are now modifying Thanksgiving travel plans due to the announced modified quarantine implemented for all residential students. Photo by Eric Wang/The Daily Campus

Many University of Connecticut students said they needed to change their Thanksgiving travel plans when the school announced that a modified quarantine would be implemented for all residential students on Friday, Nov. 13. UConn’s decision, which came in response to a rise in campus COVID-19 cases, has caused a stir among on-campus residents, who say they are now scrambling to go home. 

Taylor Coonan, a seventh-semester sports media and human rights double-major, planned on leaving campus on Monday or Tuesday this week, but ended up having to go home even earlier when news of the modified quarantine broke. 

Coonan says she appreciated UConn’s efforts in the modified quarantine, but she thinks that it should’ve been announced much earlier. 

“Many students had travel plans that were impacted by this last-minute decision, when it was clear from the beginning of the semester that the plan was to leave campus for the fall semester before Thanksgiving break,” Coonan said. “While there were some students from out of state who have taken this pandemic seriously and thought ahead to self-quarantine, that was certainly not everyone and I think that this modified quarantine would be and would have been a lot more effective had it been communicated even a month earlier.” 

“I’d go crazy if I stay here any longer than I have to.”

Christopher Bradley, a fourth-semester history major, is one student who knows certainly about the risk of students not taking the quarantine seriously. Bradley moved back home Monday after being quarantined twice due to possible exposure to someone who tested positive for COVID-19. 

“I moved back on Monday the 17th because I had been quarantined for a second time. I was lucky enough to have mostly in-person classes and being quarantined twice after coming into contact with a COVID-positive person made me feel like I was being cheated out of four weeks of my semester,” said Bradley. 

Bradley said he was annoyed by the lack of responsibility among fellow UConn students.  

“The randomness of it really irked me because I did everything in my power to avoid getting COVID-19. I never even left campus, and I still had to quarantine because of other people’s actions,” said Bradley. 

Ben Rutherford, a fifth-semester pre-music education major, expressed his dismay with the atmosphere on-campus right now, and says that he will be going home over the quarantine period to spend time with his family. 

“This place is depressing.”

“Oh yeah, I’m going home,” said Rutherford. “I’d go crazy if I stay here any longer than I have to. Plus, for me it’ll be much easier quarantining at home seeing as how I have a house full of [people].” 

Laura Nardelli, a seventh-semester organizational behavior and leadership major, summed up her disappointment with the modified quarantine in a single sentence. 

“This place is depressing,” said Nardelli. 

Nardelli says that although things are getting worse on campus, her hometown is also experiencing a rise in cases. She fears putting her parents at risk and is still unsure of whether or not she will be going home. 

“To be honest with you, I really haven’t decided yet. This feels like a lose-lose situation. I knew that, as an adult, there would be difficult decisions to make. I wasn’t expecting to have to deal with this,” said Nardelli. 

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