Reopen News: Molloy College lays out plans for Fall semester amid COVID-19 pandemic

ROCKVILLE CENTRE, Long Island (WABC) -- Molloy College on Tuesday outlined its plans for the Fall 2020 semester, which includes a tuition freeze, a hybrid of in-person and online classes, new residence life protocols and overall safety measures.

College President Dr. James Lentini demonstrated the plans and procedures to welcome students back in the fall at the campus in Rockville Centre.

"There are some in-person experiences where you have small classes, 6 feet apart, hybrid," he said. "HyFlex means there will be some face to face and some online learning going on."

Molloy plans to welcome students back to campus for the first day of classes on September 8, 2020, with many new protocols in place.

Molloy is currently reconfiguring classrooms and public spaces to accommodate students in a socially distant and medically responsible manner.

The College will also reopen its three residence halls to students for on-campus living, limiting students to single and double rooms, installing increased signage to address social distancing guidelines, and requiring face coverings in public spaces.

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President Lentini also discussed the plan and precautions being taken to hold in-person classes before touring the campus to review increased safety measures such as routine and regular cleaning of all surfaces as well as distancing of seating in classrooms and other spaces on campus.

"A really interesting kiosk that will be here in August, with facial recognition, takes your temperature," Dr. Lentini said. "And each day they'll be monitored."

Molloy had previously announced a tuition freeze for the 2020-21 academic year and refunded more than $1 million to students for fees associated with the pandemic lockdown that forced schools and businesses to close through the end of the school year.

The freeze -- with tuition currently at about $31,000 -- will cost the school millions, and then there's the question of how many students may choose not to return.

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Molloy senior Jack Ryan plans to be back, despite the unpredictability.

"Obviously this isn't what I expected," he said. "Your senior year, you want this to be fun with activities, student activities."

But he also wants a degree and, like so many, a healthy environment with some sense of normalcy in uncertain times.

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