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College asks for off-campus gatherings to stop

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LA CROSSE, Wis. (WXOW) - University of Wisconsin La Crosse administrators asked that students stop off-campus gatherings in order to mitigate rising positive COVID-19 cases.

The Dean of Students Greg Phlegar sent an email to students on campus that said students were not taking precautions seriously enough.

In part the email states, "This is not the semester we want but it is the semester we have. And it stinks. I understand students want to gather and be with one another. But, I also recognize that if students want some manner of continued engagement and for our campus to remain open, they must do better. If there was ever a time for students to bring their best selves forward, this is it."

Chancellor Joe Gow said if students continue gathering in large groups off-campus, the punishment could go as far as expulsion.

"If we find that somebody is an off-campus student hosting a party we could expel them from the university," Chancellor Gow said. "We wouldn't like to do that but if people are going to be that egregious there have to be consequences."

UW-La Crosse Senior Danny Miller lives of campus and said his friends are abiding by the rules.

"Everyone that I know has been smart," Miller said. "It just takes one or two cases to spread to a bunch more but for the most part everyone that I know has been responsible."

The school will host a COVID-19 testing site for on and off-campus students and faculty on Thursday and Friday to make sure everyone can get tested.

Chancellor Gow said this is the first testing site that they are encouraging non-symptomatic students get tested.

Students moving back into their dorms during the two-week shelter-in-place order will be required to receive a test when they move back on Monday, September 28.

In-person classes are set to resume Monday, October 5.

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Marcus Aarsvold

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