Boise State University has taught three fraternities and 18 students a hard lesson, suspending them over large gatherings the university says violate its public health policies and the Student Code of Conduct.
"Keeping campus open, safe and healthy has always been our top concern, and we have educated our students about the risks associated with large gatherings. This included specific communication with students in our fraternities and sororities," wrote Boise State Dean of Students Chris Wuthrich in a statement. "The majority of our students are doing what is required of all of us—wearing facial coverings, practicing physical distancing and not planning or participating in large gatherings. But, in order to remain open, we must have the cooperation of all of our students. Students who do not comply with university policies and orders will face sanctions, including removal from campus."
Members of the Pi Kappa, Delta Sigma Phi and Kappa Sigma fraternities, as well as a dozen and a half individual students, were handed interim suspensions on Aug. 28, and Wuthrich will look into each of those cases in the coming weeks.
In addition to following prescribed rules about face masks, physical distancing and hand-washing, Boise State has also taken other measures to slow the spread of disease while students are on campus. Those include rolling out a symptom tracker phone app, bringing public health officers onto campus and operating a contract tracing program. Staff must take COVID-19 training, and students have been instructed to watch a coronavirus safety video and follow new public health rules.