U of M moving into 2nd phase of 4-step plan amid pandemic

Monday, the University of Minnesota is moving into the second phase of its four-step plan to try to keep campuses safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.

This next step will mean fewer restrictions for students, but school officials are asking them to continue being careful.

The second step of the plan will allow students who live on campus to visit surrounding neighborhoods. They are required to be back in their dorms by 9 p.m., unless they have an approved exemption, such as work.

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Some could view this step forward as bold because university officials have addressed parties, students not following the plan’s previous rules, and what they called an expected uptick in COVID-19 cases in the community.

But university officials are calling on their students—those who live on and off campus—to be safe and follow the rules.

"I would tell everyone to please stay safe, stay indoors, keep your mask on and don’t be socializing too much" Varun Agarwal, a junior at the U of M, said. "We’re here for school, we’re here for a degree. And we’re here to get out of here for that and if you want things to get back to normal you have to sacrifice some things."

For those who do not feel like making sacrifices, and don’t follow the rules, university officials say there will be steps taken to address those students.

As the university enters into this next phase, officials are continuing to ask students to wear masks, keep their distance, and lay low if they can.

For the first time as a whole, students will be able to ask university leaders questions and share concerns during a virtual town hall Tuesday night.