Williamsport -- Dr. Trachte, president of Lycoming College, offered "encouraging and positive news from a recent meeting of the Lycoming College Board of Trustees," he reported in a letter this week to students and parents.

The Board of Trustees has endorsed a recommendation to plan for the resumption of residential education in the fall, provided the return to campus is both safe and responsible. The school has not reported the presence of COVID-19 on campus.

"This decision was based upon several factors. First, Lycoming County never experienced a pandemic surge and has already moved into Pennsylvania’s 'yellow' phase of reopening," wrote Dr. Trachte.

"Second, the College benefits from a close working relationship with the Williamsport-based regional center of UPMC—a truly world-class health system. Third, we believe that the nature of our curriculum and our small class sizes will make it easier to adapt to the safety and social distancing protocols that need to be put into place," he added.

Lycoming College officials have established a task force on resuming residential education. Members of the task force "will consider everything from how to repopulate campus to testing and tracing protocols, to ways of protecting those that have health conditions that leave them more vulnerable," Dr. Trachte wrote.

COVID-19 emergency financial aid fund

In the midst of financial challenges the pandemic and resulting economic shutdown has caused, the Board of Trustees also agreed to establish a Covid-19 Emergency Financial Aid Fund for students concerned about affording a return to shool. More information will be made available in the coming weeks.

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