Morgan welcomes students to a fully reopened campus

Students return to in-person classes on campus for the first time since March 2020.


Jordan D. Brown

Morgan kicked off the 2021-2022 academic school year with a fully reopened campus.

Jordan D. Brown, Editor in Chief

After 17 months of empty classrooms and remote learning, Morgan State University fully reopened its campus in time for the first day of classes.

Thousands of students returned to in-person classes on Monday for the first time since March 2020.

Students, faculty and staff filled the campus in academic buildings, university student center and dining halls to start off the 2021-2022 school year.

President David Wilson, Kevin Banks and other members of the administration greeted students on their way to classes Monday morning.

Wilson said he was glad to bring the student body back to campus and grant them with the college experience taken away over the past year.

“Today, when I look around, I’m seeing thousands of students and experiencing their excitement and their joy about their college experience and what is about to unfold before them,” Wilson said.

Last fall, Morgan housed about 350 students with extenuating circumstances on campus during the pandemic. Banks said the university applied what they learned last fall to this year’s reopening plan as they prepared for thousands of students to return.

“It’s a blessing that we could be here today,” Banks said. “It brings tears in my eyes–because I know it’s been a struggle for us to get here and we still got to be vigilant. Got to be vigilant because we’re still in this pandemic, but we learned a lot.”

In an effort to keep the campus safe as the pandemic continues, Morgan is still enforcing health guidelines against COVID-19 such as the vaccine requirement, indoor mask mandate and more.

Wilson said, “I am beyond elated, that we were able to put in place the COVID-19 protocols that we have in place of that the students have been very, very compliant in becoming vaccinated.”

According to Wilson, 95 percent of students residing in university housing are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Students that received a medical or religious exemption from the vaccine are required to participate in COVID-19 testing twice a week.

Many students like Keon Witherspoon, freshman business major, were excited for the first day back, but are still cautious of contracting COVID-19 while on campus.

“[There’s] pros and cons. The pros is–you get the live that experience a lot of other people probably didn’t get to live at the time,” Witherspoon said, “Also, the cons is–it’s probably a higher chance that you can catch it. But if you’re safe, then you don’t have to really worry. You get to meet new people, and you get to have fun.”

Although the Delta variant is rapidly spreading across the country, Wilson is hopeful the university will not face another shut down due to COVID-19.

Wilson said, “I’m optimistic that we’ll be able to get through the semester without perhaps having to close the university or to go virtual and I’m hopeful.”

Jewel Champbell contributed to this article.