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Deadline for CSUMB’s planned in-person Fall 2021 extended to Jan. 15

CSUMB students on the beach 1 mile from campus
CSUMB students on the beach 1 mile from campus

By Walter Ryce

Published Dec. 22, 2020

While COVID-19 continues to spread distress across the country, and California is experiencing another surge of positive cases, the tide is also changing in the course of the pandemic.

Promising vaccines are being shipped and administered nationwide, raising hopes that a less hazardous and more normal mode of life can be achieved near the end of 2021.

That hope was endorsed on Dec. 18 by Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, in a livestreamed conversation between Fauci and outgoing California State University (CSU) Chancellor Timothy P. White. The online talk was attended by the presidents of the 23 CSU campuses and thousands of members of the public.

“[California has] had to really resort to rather dramatic shutdown procedures,” Fauci said. “That's the bitter part. The sweet part, and the light at the end of the tunnel, is that as these weeks and months go by, if we hang in there, things will get better and better as we implement a vaccine that will ultimately put this outbreak behind us.”

CSUMB President Eduardo M. Ochoa has cited that kind of science- and evidence-based reasoning that prompted the CSUs to quickly shift to a virtual mode of instruction for the remainder of the Spring 2020 semester, and to continue it through Spring 2021.

It has worked. While many colleges and universities are grappling with triple- and quadruple-digit COVID-positive cases, CSUMB has only had 12 positive cases among the community that had access to campus, and no instances of person-to-person spread in the workplace, since the beginning of the pandemic to Dec. 22.

Science- and evidence-based reasoning has also given the CSUs confidence in announcing more hopeful news for the coming year.

“We are approaching planning for the 2021 fall term with the goal of having the majority of our on-campus experiences returning," said incoming CSU Chancellor Joseph I. Castro, who succeeds White in January. “I urge eligible students to apply for admission to one or more CSU campuses.”

To give prospective students more time to do so, the CSU has allowed its campuses to extend their deadlines for fall enrollment. CSUMB’s deadline has been extended to Jan. 15, 2021, and the process can begin at the Cal State Apply webpage. Application fee waivers and financial aid programs are available to students.

In an official statement, Ochoa said, “We look forward to welcoming new and returning students to campus this fall, which we plan to be primarily through in-person instruction.”

Fauci cautioned during the CSU livestream conversation that the coming spring and summer months will be very challenging: “We're really at the crossroads of an extraordinary time in our country and in the state of California,” he said.

According to Ochoa, two principles — the wellbeing of the campus and surrounding communities, and delivering the best educational experience possible — will guide the CSU’s actions.

“The health and safety of our students, faculty, staff and community remain our highest priority,” Ochoa said. “We continue to evaluate and plan for our return to campus and will release details as the fall semester approaches.”

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