The Student Experience
Shenandoah University sophomore Max Myers was anxious when he heard that he’d have to isolate for 10 days after testing positive for COVID-19. He wasn’t sure what to expect.
“There were a lot of unknowns going into it,” he said.
Myers was one of nearly 1,000 residential students tested for COVID-19 during Move-In Days at Shenandoah in August and one of only a handful of these students to receive a positive result.
Myers’ experience started a day after being tested for COVID-19, when he received a confirmation email from the Wilkins Wellness Center stating that he had tested positive for the virus. The executive director of the center, Hanan Kallash, called to chat about his results and the next steps for isolation. She told him that he would move into an isolation room in South Campus Commons and be monitored daily.
Ericka Rohrbaugh, the assistant director of residential services, showed him his temporary room and gave him his key card. To make students feel connected, the Office of Residence Life provides those in isolation and quarantine with a welcome folder called “The Campus Connection” that contains FAQs about adjusting to quarantine/isolation as well as information about academic support and virtual campus events.
Our goal is to make sure the transition into and out of quarantine and isolation is smooth and that students feel supported throughout the entire process. Our Residence Life team is available 24/7 to help answer questions and connect students to resources.”
Ericka Rohrbaugh | Assistant director of residential services
The Wilkins Wellness Center also hands out a care package of health resources to students in isolation/quarantine that includes masks, a thermometer, and some over-the-counter medication, such as Tylenol and cough drops.
Over the next 10 days, Myers received food delivery from Sodexo, began taking classes online through ShenFlex and received calls from the Wilkins Wellness Center to see how he was doing. To his surprise, he also received calls from both Shenandoah President Tracy Fitzsimmons, Ph.D., and Vice President for Student Affairs Yolanda Barbier Gibson, D.A.
It’s nice to see your leaders do that. It definitely helped being reached out to. It was nice feeling support from people you don’t even think know you.”
Max Myers, ’23
Although Myers was disappointed to miss attending his first week of classes in-person and although his time in isolation went slowly, he said the experience was really important and necessary.
I would tell someone going through this that it’s going to be difficult, but it’s only a temporary thing. Everyone here is strong enough to get through it. You’re doing something that protects others around you and preserves our stay at the university, hopefully all semester.”
Max Myers, ’23