University fall classes begin with the majority of courses online


HONOLULU (KHON2) –The surge in COVID-19 cases on Oahu prompted the University of Hawaii administration to pivot on in-person classes just weeks before students were expected to return. About 20% of classes were initially in-person, but those plans have changed.

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The University of Hawaii at Manoa Provost Michael Bruno said professors were asked to revise their lessons to include more online learning.

Bruno said, “That number of face-to-face courses has come all the way down to 4%, only 4% of the courses at Manoa are face-to-face, about 86% are 100% online.” 

Even with the majority of classes online, students and staff who step onto campus will need to check-in with an app called LumiSight UH.

The questionnaire in the app asks if the person is feeling any symptoms associated with Coronavirus, as well as any recent travel. The person will simply answer yes or no.

Bruno said, “Our expectation is that you are not going to use it, and that means register to use it until you have a reason to come to campus.”

About 1,500 students are living in the dorms, the provost said that is less than 50% capacity, only one student will live in a standard two-bed dorm room.

The university said the communal dorm bathrooms are cleaned once a week following guidance from the CDC.

The students who come from out-of-state fall into the “higher education bubble”, and the State’s Department of Health was involved in forming those plans.

Bruno said, “Only after showing proof of that negative COVID-19 test can the student engage in a very strictly controlled set of activities.”

Those activities are on-campus such as orientation, and the student will be expected to return to their dorm soon after. They will be on modified quarantine for two weeks.

However, students who test positive will be isolated in a hotel outside campus where they will be connected with health counselors and university staff who will deliver their meals.

Those quarantine plans are already in use.

Bruno said, “We had a student test positive and that student was moved from the residence hall into the facility.”  

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