East Carolina hits 1,000 COVID-19 cases among students; UNC, NC State near that figure

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, September 9, 2020


Associated Press/Report for America

RALEIGH (AP) — At least 1,000 East Carolina University students have tested positive for the coronavirus since fall classes began on Aug. 10, according to the college’s COVID-19 case count.

ECU’s COVID-19 dashboard updated Tuesday afternoon shows 1,084 students tested positive for the virus between Aug. 9 and Sept. 5, thus making ECU the first college in the state to eclipse 1,000 cases since classes started again.

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and North Carolina State University, which started in-person classes the same day as ECU, are also approaching 1,000 student coronavirus cases.

UNC had more than 900 student cases through Sept. 3, while N.C. State reported nearly 800 through Aug. 29, according to their university dashboards. Both campuses are scheduled to release updated numbers on Tuesday evening.

Mass gatherings, including parties put on by fraternities and sororities, have fueled some coronavirus spread nationwide. Police shut down several parties during ECU’s opening weekend, including one with about 400 attendees.

North Carolina on Friday transitioned to Phase 2.5 of its reopening plan, which increased gathering limits to 25 people indoors and 50 people outdoors, up from the previous limit of 10 indoors and 25 outdoors.

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Anderson is a corps member for the Associated Press/Report for America Statehouse News Initiative. Report for America is a nonprofit national service program that places journalists in local newsrooms to report on undercovered issues.