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As Campuses Close, Students Worry About Replacing Lost Jobs

This article is more than 3 years old.

More Boston-area campuses are forcing the majority of students off campus as a measure to lessen the public health impact of the coronavirus.

Two colleges in Boston reversed their policies of allowing students to remain on campus as they moved to online classes.

Friday, Emerson College announced students would have to be off campus by next Friday, March 20. They had until the end of the day Tuesday to ask for exemptions.

Over the weekend, Northeastern University announced it would close its campus Tuesday.

Across all campuses, the move out is disruptive. For students receiving financial aid, it raises worries about losing income from campus jobs.

On Friday, Boston College Sophomore Allarynn Keita was preparing to head home to New York.

"It's real tough for a student like me," Keita said, "especially with my home life and my money situation. All of things is going to make my life a lot harder than it's got to be."

Keita said he applied to stay on campus, but had not received a response as of Friday. Students were told Thursday that they had to move out by Sunday night.

Boston College spokesman Jack Dunn said students who apply to stay on campus citing the need to hold on to their jobs will be allowed to stay and to retain their jobs.

Students who do not apply to stay will have to find their own jobs. That's the case of Liana Bellandi , who was headed home to New Jersey.

"I don't have a job," Bellandi said. "I have two jobs on campus, which I need, so that's really stressful. I'll definitely need to find a job at home."

UMass Boston said it is asking managers to arrange work from home for students whenever possible, in order to facilitate payment. If students cannot work from home, the campus is promising that they will be paid at their regular rate through April 3. UMass Boston said it will re-evaluate that in the coming days.

A Northeastern University spokesman sent an email after this story published, saying that students who receive work study will continue to get paid as they work, and students who are co-ops employed with the university will be paid through the end of the semester.

This article was originally published on March 16, 2020.

This segment aired on March 17, 2020.

Fred Thys Twitter Reporter
Fred Thys reported on politics and higher education for WBUR.



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