Kitchener-Waterloo

Students told to move out of residence this week at Waterloo and Guelph universities

Wilfrid Laurier University has given students until Wednesday to move out of school-owned residences while Waterloo has told students to be out by Friday and Guelph is asking students to move out as soon as possible.

Laurier has given students until Wednesday, Waterloo asks students to be out by Friday

Students in Waterloo and Guelph are being told to pack up their dorm rooms. Students at Laurier have until Wednesday to move out of residence, Waterloo has given students until Friday and Guelph is asking students to leave as soon as possible. The universities say it's a measure to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Students who live in residence at the University of Waterloo, Wilfrid Laurier University and the University of Guelph are being told to move out this week.

The request is to stop the spread of the coronavirus, officials say in statements on each of the university websites.

At Laurier, students are being told to move out by Wednesday.

Waterloo is "strongly encouraging" students make plans to move out by Friday.

Guelph is asking students to move out as soon as possible. 

"We will continue to provide services to students who cannot leave campus, although students may be required to move between residences, among other changes," Guelph said in a release.

Some exceptions

Wilfrid Laurier and the University of Waterloo are allowing some students to remain in residence. An exception has been granted for international students and out of province students. 

Wilfrid Laurier is also allowing students who live more than five hours away from campus to stay, as well as students who are currently self-isolating as a precaution. 

The University of Guelph is also making exceptions for international students.

"At this point, approximately 200 domestic and international students have asked to extend their stay in housing due to extenuating circumstances," university officials said in an email to CBC News.

Matthew Grant, director of media relations at the University of Waterloo, said for students who need to remain in residence "we will make accommodations for that, but we will also do whatever is necessary on residences and campus to enable the ability for social distancing."

All three universities have moved the rest of the semester's classes to online or are offering alternatives to students for completing assignments and exams. Guelph has cancelled classes for this week so students could get settled at home. It means their semester will be extended by a week.

Reimbursements

Both Waterloo and Guelph universities will reimburse students for left-over rent and meal plans and will be providing pro-rated refunds to students.

Kevin Crowley, director of communications at Wilfrid Laurier University, told CBC News Tuesday staff have not made a final decision on providing pro-rated refunds to students.

"Although we feel the frustration of students, we really do hope that they'll come to realize that we are in extraordinary times and we will assist them as best we can," he said.

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