BOSTON (CBS) — As colleges and universities across the state begin to re-open and classes resume in a hybrid online-in-person COVID-19 culture, there are a lot of concerns from students, faculty, and staff.
“It’s difficult to see it working with college students,” Tufts University senior Chavez Emeki said.
“Everyone wants to be back in the classrooms and the libraries and the labs but many people are very nervous about what that will mean especially on our residential campuses,” Massachusetts Teachers Association Vice President, Max Page said.
MTA represents 18,000 higher ED faculty and staff from state universities to community colleges.
“There are many, many concerns about whether that can be done safely. Part of it is that we have had our UMass budget that would call for $264 million in cuts including up to 2,000 layoffs,” Page said.
An emergency virtual forum will begin at 5 p.m. on Monday consisting of higher education leaders and key legislatures to discuss concerns about opening up college campuses. The main concerns are furloughs, layoffs, and program changes.
The University of Massachusetts released a statement saying: “The university has been and continues to be, fully engaged with public health experts, faculty, staff, students and each of our campuses’ surrounding communities in planning for a safe fall semester.”
Armin Amangelgiyeze is from Kazakhstan and plans to graduate from Umass Boston next year. “They still don’t have a vaccination for COVID, so everyone is taking risks,” Armin said.
Tufts University students will have to be tested twice before moving back on campus. “I believe in all the guidelines they look great on paper. They are doing their best to accommodate for what’s going on,” Emeki said.