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San Diego State students keep partying while coronavirus cases rise

Students were seen crowding the College Area without social distancing or wearing masks for the second weekend in a row while SDSU reports seven cases in three days
Credit: KFMB

SAN DIEGO — For the second weekend in a row, students were seen crowding the College Area Friday night. Hardly anyone was seen to be wearing masks or social distancing.

News 8 noted anywhere from 150 to 200 people walking the neighborhood near San Diego State, ranging from the Aztec Corner Apartments off Montezuma Road, all the way to the corner of College Avenue and El Cajon Boulevard.

Most notably, a house located on the corner of Pontiac and Rockford Drive had a large gathering inside for the second weekend in a row, according to observations by News 8. About 30 to 40 people were seen from the outside with no face masks or social distancing.

Large groups of 10 to 15 students, also without wearing masks, were seen going into buildings near the Paseo Place apartments, and The Suites on Paseo.

Loud music and yelling could be heard from the buildings and houses where students were congregating.

On August 18, SDSU welcomed 2,600 students to residential housing. Since then, eight cases of coronavirus were reported among students out of 171 tests performed at the Student Health Center.

This makes a 4.6% positive test rate. No data was immediately available for students getting tested at the County drive-up location located in Parking Lot 17b.

Seven of the eight positive cases were reported between Wednesday and Friday of this week.

Out of three cases reported on Friday, two of them were related to one of the student cases reported on August 27, according to the university.

The third case reported on Friday was linked to another student case reported on August 26. 

SDSU reported two cases on August 26. Despite the Friday case being related to one on the 26, SDSU said the cases on August 26 were not believed to be related to any reported off-campus gatherings.

The university rolled out disciplinary measures for any violations against health codes and mask mandates issued by SDSU.

SDSU put out a statement that reads in part:

"In regards to the facial covering mandate, which requires anyone on campus -- indoors and outdoors -- to wear a facial covering at all times with very limited exceptions, students in violation of this policy are subject to individual student code of conduct violations. For any off-campus gathering, both organizational violations as well as individual violations will be issued. The university takes any violation extremely seriously. Consequences range from an official warning to expulsion. The university asks that any community member who becomes aware of a potential violation among students report the situation using the COVID-19 Incident Reporting Form.

For those living on-campus, the university has put into place an extensive range of proactive measures. If violated, these are also subject to student disciplinary action, as noted above."

The university also said the large gatherings reported last weekend are being looked at by Student Life and Leadership.

On August 21, days after SDSU's interfraternity council laid out a social gathering ban, large groups of students were seeing walking into the cul-de-sac of College Place. 

The small dead-end street is home to the sorority Alpha Gamma Delta, and fraternities known as Sigma Alpha Epsilon and Alpha Epsilon Pi.

SDSU has an extensive list of all coronavirus-related precautions taken to keep students living in residence halls safe, but all 8 cases of coronavirus reported so far, have been students living off-campus.

Since the start of the pandemic, the university has reported 32 cases of the virus among students, faculty and staff.

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