So far, so good. As COVID-19 cases rise and many schools move to online instruction, Colorado Mountain College (CMC) appears to have successfully mitigated the spread both for students on campus and those who commute. CMC is following the five commitments of containment.
CMC has set up three ways for students to take classes: online, flex and in-person. Flex primarily uses remote learning with some in-person components available. In-person classes are those that cannot be taught remotely but follow social distancing and include advanced safety guidelines.
CMC students fill out a health survey and take their temperature every day to help the university monitor student health. Students who plan to go home for the holiday break will continue to monitor their symptoms to help reduce the spread while being out of town.
College Vice President and Campus Dean of Leadville and Salida, Rachel Pokrandt, spoke to the success that CMC has had with mitigating the spread. “Our students have been amazing in terms of following the five commitments and being respectable and understanding that their behavior is what keeps us running.”
The CMC Leadville campus has had multiple students get tested for COVID-19 but has not had any positive cases thus far. Pokrandt said “they’ve really responded to that personal responsibility asked of them. We’ve had a lot of students quarantine, they haven’t ended up having COVID, but the minute they get the sniffles we get the text message from them and we start delivering meals three times a day. They’ve been really great about self-identifying.”
CMC Leadville is one of three residential campuses. Pokrandt explained “We have a very different student base here. Even the students who come to our resident’s hall are of nontraditional age. The average age of our [students] in the residence hall is 24 years old, so we don’t really get the students who are coming for that social experience, they’re really coming for an academic experience.”
Pokrandt continued “They’re very focused on the outdoors so their idea of having fun is being in the backcountry, it’s not necessarily throwing a party. We’re very fortunate in that regard and our students have really recognized that the way that they stay here and have an academic experience is by really following all the rules.”
Looking to the continued mitigation Pokrandt said “We’re really small and we have great facilities that we can really social distance, so we’ve been extremely fortunate, and I think we’re doing an awesome job. We recognize that we are not completely in control so we’re also ready if there is any kind of issue or outbreak here.”