Cal U Students express thoughts on the recent mask mandate change

Across Cal U, Clarion, and Edinboro, students are no longer required to wear a face mask indoors, except for high risk areas.

Sarah Seader, Staff Writer

On March 2nd, Cal U students received an email from Dr. Dale-Elizabeth Pehrsson, the Interim President of the California University of Pennsylvania, updating the current mask policy. This statement went effective immediately, that students on campus are no longer required to wear masks indoors. 

This decision came about after the number of COVID cases on campus were remaining low, and in accordance with the CDC Guidelines, the mask policy was lifted right before the week of March 14th, which was Spring Break. With current Cal U students going through a semester and a half with the mask requirement, some students are continuing to wear a mask while other students choose not to. Students must still wear masks when in the health and counseling offices, at COVID-19 testing areas, and on transportation.

Junior, Nicholas Bulik, majoring in Fisheries and Wildlife Biology, stated that he does not mind the updated mask policy. Bulik continued, “For me, I haven’t felt sick ever since we’ve had these mandates so I’m not going to stop wearing the mask for now at least.”

Bulik also said one of the steps forward is, “people are able to talk with their friends and hang out with them normally. There are also fewer restrictions for entering places such as restaurants.”

Bulik mentioned one of the biggest drawbacks could be if a new case of COVID comes around, “most places won’t be prepared.”

Cal U Senior, Isabell Wooddell, majoring in Political Science, shared her opinion on the updated mask policy. “I think it’s the appropriate response considering cases have gone down significantly and masks are still required in potential high-risk areas (i.e., health center, public transport),” said Woodell.

Students should continue to pay attention to their health by maintaining good hygiene and continuing to routinely wash their hands. “Since they don’t have to wear a mask, they may be less likely to continue keeping up with washing their hands regularly or social distancing,” stated Woodell.

Wooddell stressed that going forward, some steps would be people keeping up with the practices to deter the spread of COVID or any disease. This includes washing hands regularly, using hand sanitizer, and monitoring if they get sick or show any symptoms.

Regardless of how one feels about the mask policy, it is important to keep in mind that this is one of the major changes to getting back to how things were prior to COVID. Continue to stay safe Vulcans and keep an eye on your emails for any other COVID Policy or mask updates.