UNC students concerned after video surfaces of crowded sorority rush party

Orange County News

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WNCN) –Some people in the UNC-Chapel Hill community are concerned after a video surfaced online of students not properly social distancing at a sorority rush party off campus.

The video that had been shared on Twitter shows dozens of students coming out of a private home and not wearing masks.

“It’s infuriating,” said Ben Fortun, a graduate student at UNC.

Fortun said he is concerned that these types of incidents will lead to an outbreak of COVID-19 on campus and in the community.

“Obviously what the sorority students did was irresponsible,” Fortun said. “But the blame should not be pointed directly at them. It really is on the hands of the administration who decided that bringing all of the students back was a good idea.”

CBS 17 reached out to the university for a comment. University officials emailed the following statement late Wednesday:

“We expect students to follow our community standards to help protect each other, our campus and local community. Students were required to sign an acknowledgment of the community standards and agree to follow them. We are disappointed with the reports we have received regarding this event and will follow up, as we do with all reports that indicate our community expectations may not have been met.”

– Amy Johnson, UNC-Chapel Hill Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs

According to UNC’s Carolina Together website, The Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life is working with fraternity and sorority leadership to implement virtual experiences for rushing and recruitment.

While students have only been back a few days, officials with the Chapel Hill Police Department said they have received an increase in 911 calls about large crowds of people not social distancing in the community.

Some students told CBS 17 they think the University should move all classes online and only allow students who have no where else to stay to live on campus.

Lindsay Ayling, a UNC PhD candidate, helped organize a “die-in” protest on campus on Wednesday where they called for the university to implement these changes.

“I don’t think there’s any questioning that if the University opens up people will die,” Ayling said. “Once we realize there’s been an outbreak of coronavirus, it will be too late.”

University officials have said that if students are caught not abiding by the mask mandate on campus, they could be disenrolled.

As for off campus, Orange County Health Officials said they will be enforcing the mask mandate through education.

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