Education

Duke students speak out after a large, maskless party took place off campus on Friday

Posted February 21, 2021 7:45 p.m. EST
Updated February 22, 2021 12:10 p.m. EST

— Frustration was rampant at Duke University after a large, mask-less gathering with up to 50 people took place off campus on Friday night.

University officials called it a "flagrant violation of university COVID-19 expectations."

Duke students, faculty and staff are expected to sign a pledge that lays out rules and expectations during the pandemic, and students say it’s not the time to host parties right now.

Duke freshman Hailey Williams says she's tired of this type of thing occurring and wants to see her fellow classmates follow the rules.

"Whenever I hear this stuff, it makes me a little upset," Williams said. "We've already gotten a lot of warnings, and I feel like, if we can do a better job of indicating and figuring out who those individuals are, who are really promoting these gatherings, they should definitely get a talking to."

Duke was praised last semester for its response to limiting the spread of COVID-19 on campus with mass testing and limited campus housing.

University officials say they’ll begin contact tracing and surveillance testing people who attended the gathering.

Senior Natalie Novitsky says she hopes the people in attendance will take responsibility.

"I'm hoping that everyone that happened to be part of it will quarantine or make sure they're getting tested," she said.

There is no word on whether students will face suspension for breaking the protocol, but Duke has enacted this type of punishment in the past.

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