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Spring Breakers or Super-Spreaders?

By Chanel Lubsey, Staff Writer

The United States currently has over 20 states under a stay-at-home order to limit the spread of the new coronavirus, but some college students ignored the mandate and followed through anyway with their spring break plans.

Florida was a hot spot for students to party through the pandemic and socialize with other spring breakers. A spring breaker in Miami told the New York Times, “If I get Corona, I get Corona.”

Amidst spring breakers returning to their universities or family homes, a correlated uprise began in COVID-19 cases. Speculation among some included the possibility that spring breakers who traveled to Florida might be “super-spreaders,” or people who disproportionately infect a large number of people with the virus, according to Politico.

But not all students found it necessary to travel to places such as Florida this spring break. Some actually felt that those who did travel to popular destinations were being insensitive to the potential risk of jeopardizing their own and their loved ones health.

“The college students that willingly went out during the virus weren’t thinking at all because now they are spreading it to their loved ones who then could spread it to others, thus, spiking the curve,” Tasia Hernandez, a sophomore nutrition and dietetics major, said.

Some students believe that President Donald Trump is to blame considering the lack of concern some think he has shown regarding the hazards of COVID-19.

“[Trump] hadn’t taken it seriously and instead tried to play it down,” Tierra Gillet, a sophomore business administration major, said. “If I had no idea how bad it really was, I probably wouldn’t have canceled my vacation either.”

Gillet also believed that if the president provided a more accurate approach at assessing the crisis, students would have taken the situation more seriously.

“I’m sure if it was made clear that the situation is serious, like it is now with curfew and 14-day quarantine after travel, then there would be much less cases now,” Gillet said.

Some students canceled their plans to Florida for spring break due to their worry of the COVID-19 outbreak. Tyanna Middleton, a sophomore music major who battles with the autoimmune disease Lupus, was one of those students.

“I was supposed to go to Florida for spring break, but I cancelled it because I was worried about the coronavirus outbreak and my potential to get it because of the fact that I have Lupus,” Middleton said.

Hernandez said she couldn’t go out or see her family and friends during her week off from school. “COVID-19 ruined all of my plans that I had for my spring break,” she said.

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