September 7, 2020

Friday test results posted on COVID-19 Dashboard

Dear Campus Community,

First, we would like to thank the students on campus who went to Timmons Arena this past Friday to be tested and the returning students who are getting tested this week as they prepare to come back to campus starting this Friday. We truly appreciate our students taking this step and following our health and safety protocols to help protect our campus community and beyond.

In this afternoon’s update to Furman’s COVID-19 Dashboard, we are reporting that of the 1,254 students tested this past Friday, a total of three students tested positive for COVID-19, for a positivity rate of 0.24%. Returning students’ results will be posted in future dashboard updates as they become available.

The Earle Student Health Center notified students of their results as they became available and initiated contact tracing for positive cases. Students who are on campus and who tested positive were placed in isolation this weekend. Their reported close contacts were quarantined. Overall, most students have been isolating or quarantining at home and not on campus, per their families’ plans.

As we shared last week, we are asking all of our returning second- and third-year students to be tested and to provide a negative PCR test result before coming to campus. Any students who are unable to get tested before returning will be tested when they arrive in Greenville. Students whose test results are pending will be asked to maintain low contact with others on campus and to log those interactions.

Since August 12, when first-year and transfer students arrived on campus, the university has confirmed a total of 41 positive cases. At least 34 of those cases are connected to the off-campus parties from two weeks ago. We modified our testing protocols in part because of concerns over the outbreak related to those large off-campus gatherings. The results of Friday’s campus screening event suggest that Furman’s measures for community health and safety are working.

We are grateful to all students, faculty and staff who continue to help promote the health and safety of our community. The efforts of our students who are now on campus have demonstrated that we can have a successful in-person semester by caring for ourselves and for each other. We look forward to second- and third-year students joining us and contributing to our shared success.

Please remember as we increase the density of students on campus it is even more important for each of us to follow the health and safety guidelines of the Paladin Promise and to complete the LiveSafe health survey every day. Please also continue to check your email and the Furman Focused website for updates.

Thank you, again, and be safe.

Sincerely,

Ken Peterson, Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost
Connie Carson, Vice President for Student Life

Co-chairs, Fall Planning Steering Committee