NC State, UNC-Chapel Hills students grapple with whether to leave campus as COVID-19 cases climb

RALEIGH (WTVD) -- College students caught up in clusters around campus are facing a tough decision as COVID-19 cases rise.

Jessica Foland is still living in an NC State dorm. She's weighing whether to leave, but said the school is making no promises that she would have a spot to come back to down the line.

"I don't necessarily think it's fair just because we spend a lot of money to get into this school," Foland said. "If I leave, I'm probably not going to have the same roommate. I'm probably not going to have the same dorm. I may just have to stay home for the rest of the year."

Off-campus housing in downtown Raleigh now an unnecessary expense for students after classes move online

Another student's parents are also determining the best course of action.

"It's been very stressful (with the) uncertainty of what's going to happen," said Jared Clark.

FULL CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE

NC State doesn't want students to feel under the gun to go.

"We want to provide our students with a choice. We know that some may not feel safe living on campus as we share more information about positive cases and potential spread," said NC State spokesperson Lauren Barker.

UNC-Chapel Hill is taking a different approach.

The university urged students to move out of on-campus dorms when the announcement was made coursework was moved to remote learning.

The last day to cancel housing contracts or submit a hardship review was Aug. 25.

UNC is offering $400 stipend to those receiving financial aid to help with moving costs. NC State is helping students in a similar way.

Money is being handed out through the Pack Essentials Program. It runs on donations and more than $1.2 million has been raised since March.

Students can apply to receive help and the university said the program has awarded more than $982,000 in financial support for students.
Copyright © 2020 WTVD-TV. All Rights Reserved.