With Washington state recently moving into Phase 2, the university is planning and preparing for an in-person experience for this fall.
Phase 2 will allow the university to have more in-person activities on campus, said Phil Weiler, WSU vice president for marketing and communications.
“The University Recreation Center and the Chinook have increased the capacity to what is allowed, rather than only having a limited amount of reservations,” ASWSU President Curtis Cohen said.
Even though the university is planning for an in-person experience, it will not be the same as what students are used to, he said.
Gov. Jay Inslee has a separate set of guidelines in place for higher education. Spaces are being made available in the CUB and other buildings to those who want a quiet place to study, Weiler said.
Lecture portions of classes with more than 100 students will be virtual. Weiler said the university increased the amount of in-person classes this semester.
There were about 30 lab-related or studio-related courses in the fall. This spring, there are about 60, he said.
Weiler said they found almost no transmission of COVID-19 in the residence halls.
“What that told us was that we believe we can do incremental reopening in a safe way, making sure people follow the guidelines in place,” he said.
Wearing masks and social distancing helps mitigate the spread of the virus and will allow the university to open up at a faster rate, Weiler said.
Cohen said he is hoping to see COVID-19 cases decline because WSU encourages arrival testing and offers free testing in the CUB.
“I think that if the vaccination rate among the student body is fairly high, that we could see things changing a lot closer to normal as well,” he said.
Weiler said everyone who wants a vaccine should be able to receive one by late summer.