First confirmed COVID-19 case at SF State


Catherine Stites

Graphic by Catherine Stites

Juan Carlos Lara

SF State President Lynn Mahoney announced the first confirmed case of COVID-19 within the SF State community Sunday night. 

In a campus-wide email, Mahoney said she received confirmation of the case from the San Francisco Department of Public Health. 

The unnamed employee lived off campus and was last present on campus on March 6, according to Mahoney. No more information regarding the employee was provided 

“Out of an abundance of caution, additional sanitizing of areas the employee was known to have visited will be conducted.” Mahoney said.

The email also mentioned that the campus would remain open, but employees 65 or older and those with chronic disease would be ordered to stay off campus, citing Governor Gavin Newsom’s deep social distancing suggestions

The announcement comes after a week of suspended classes and a day before the official beginning of university-wide remote modality teachings. 

Mahoney set the temporary suspension of events to end on March 31, and the suspension of face-to-face classes on April 5. This discovery is just one of several signs pointing to the possibility of classes being suspended through the rest of the semester. 

Approximately an hour prior to President Mahoney’s announcement, a department chair sent out an update to students and staff. Within the email, the chair speculated that the ban on campus events might continue through the end of the semester.

“The university has not yet decided about May events. Personally, I am guessing they will be cancelled,” said the unnamed chair.

Mayor London Breed recently issued a city-wide ban on gatherings of over 100 people, through the end of April. If face-to-face classes were to return as originally stated, some lecture halls might be in violation of this ban. 

Across the bay, the first case of COVID-19 among the UC Berkeley community was announced yesterday via email. The afflicted individual is a graduate student who does not live on campus, according to Vice Chancellor for Administration Marc Fisher and Assistant Vice Chancellor for University Health Services Guy Nicolette. 

The day prior to the announcement, UC Berkeley announced the cancellation of face-to-face classes for the remainder of the semester  in an email by Chancellor Carol Christ and Executive Vice Chancellor Paul Alivisatos.