EAST LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — More than 40 people stood outside Michigan State University’s Presidents’ house on campus tonight. They say they’re demanding President Samuel Stanley Jr. allow professors to switch to a hybrid model of teaching and more transparency for COVID-19 numbers on campus.
Students and staff at MSU say despite the school’s vaccine requirements and masks, they don’t feel safe enough in the classroom.
“It’s really scary because I don’t know which students have it. And I risk every single day and that’s what all of us are finding really scary,” said Carol Prahinski, an assistant professor at the university.
She says although only 5 of her students contracted the virus teaching in-person still puts her at risk. Just last month MSU president Stanley said the decision to require the vaccine and masks is to keep students safe.
“This is a very important decision. we were hoping not to do it but looking at the data and the science and the findings of the CDC, use want to be driven by what’s happening in the community and be flexible,” he said.
Tonight students and teachers say they don’t feel that way.
“I want us as faculty members to have the ability to switch multi-modality, switching to online if we need to and to protect our members both the faculty the staff, and the students,” said Prahinski.
She says she’s been teaching face to face since classes started earlier this month but she rather teach virtually.
“I love being face to face with my students but I’m really struggling with the high prevalence of COVID right now, and it’s skyrocketing on campus,” said Prahinski.
She says she just wants to feel safe while doing what she loves.
“Why aren’t you allowing us to make the decision to have good leadership which is to take care and protect the health of our community,” she said.
Protestors at today’s rally are hoping to get a response from the university soon.