2020 Coronavirus Outbreak

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UNC fans cheer on the football team at the homecoming game against Duke on Saturday, Oct. 26, 2019 at Kenan Memorial Stadium. UNC defeated Duke 20-17 for the first time in three years.

Will students feel comfortable going to games this fall?

Despite a rising number of positive COVID-19 tests across the country, the ACC plans to start its football season the week of Sept. 7-12. With the North Carolina football team planning to play an 11-game schedule, the UNC athletics department could open the doors of Kenan Stadium to fans in a limited capacity.  


Tyler Smith, an incoming first-year, exits Graham Residence Hall wearing a mask as two RA's, sophomores Tiel Pham (left) and Nigel Goins (right) sit in the entryway to assist with move-in on Wednesday, Aug. 5, 2020.

Orange County health director calls for UNC to go fully remote for at least five weeks

Orange County Health Department Director Quintana Stewart sent a letter to UNC officials on July 29 recommending the University limit on-campus housing and implement online-only instruction for the first five weeks of the semester as a minimum. The letter was released to the public Wednesday, sparking outrage among faculty and community leaders. Shutting down campus, however, "is not a realistic option," Stewart said.


Screenshot from the virtually Faculty Committee Meeting on Friday, June 19, 2020 to discuss the Carolina Roadmap.

'This road leads to a disaster': Faculty express reopening concerns in letters

UNC faculty have expressed concerns about the University's reopening, along with student leaders and campus workers. Through a public letter published in The Charlotte Observer and a letter from Chairperson of the Faculty Mimi Chapman, faculty have expressed their fears of returning to campus and of community spread of COVID-19.  “We are willing to do our part,” Chapman wrote. “But at this point, I believe that our University and perhaps the entire UNC System is being asked to turn straw into gold.”


UNC System workers march across campus towards South Building on Friday, July 17, 2020 to protest the university’s approach to reopening.

Campus workers delivered demands to University officials. Their deadline just passed.

Director of Housekeeping Services Herb Richmond received a petition from UNC housekeepers on July 22, which demanded a response within the next five business days. To date, campus workers have heard no response, said Penny Elliott, crew leader for UNC Housekeeping.  The petition addresses concerns such as providing proper personal protective equipment, requiring health checks at work, extending administrative leave and requiring the University to be transparent about the private contractors hired to clean. 


A peer counselor at the Office of Scholarships and Student Aid gives financial advice to an incoming transfer student. Students with work study jobs are eligible for SNAP benefits, but few UNC students use the program. 

Here's what you need to know about CARES Act emergency aid for UNC students

UNC announced plans in May to begin releasing emergency funding from the CARES Act to students with a demonstrated need for aid. In the months since then, confusion has run wild through the student body about what exactly that would entail. In particular, students pointed to a lack of timeliness, clarity and transparency on the University's part about the emergency grant funding.


Donald Strickland and Martina Brooks at the Carrboro Hampton Inn & Suites inspect safe breakfast procedures. Photo Courtesy of Laurie Paolicelli.

Here's how COVID-19 has affected Chapel Hill tourism

“We are a safer community to be in than many other places,” Aaron Nelson, the president and CEO of the Chamber for a Greater Chapel Hill-Carrboro, said. “People looking for a safe place with great food and a walkable community, we’re a great place for them to come.”