ORANGEBURG, S.C. – More than a dozen volunteers on Thursday packed totes with staples for South Carolina State University students in isolation or quarantine because of COVID-19.
The “We Care” effort is coordinated by the University’s Department of Biological and Physical Sciences. Healthy Blue is the primary sponsor by providing the totes, sanitizers and a monetary donation for nonperishable items. Packages also include such items as fresh fruits, canned soups, bottled water, healthy snacks, juices, waters, cleaning items, toiletries.
We Care effort volunteers with packages filled for students affected by COVID-19.
Students who test positive while on campus are directed to an isolation hall for 10 days. They are delivered meals daily while carrying out their studies in their rooms. Students exposed to COVID-19 are instructed to quarantine in their residences until cleared.
“We will give these packages from today to all those students,” said Dr. Ashley Evans Knowell, associate professor of biology/bioengineering science. “Then we will keep the nonperishable items to give to students in the future as they check into the isolation dorm or if they have to go into quarantine.”
Several Orangeburg community organizations are supporting the effort with donations and volunteer workers. They include the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control, Growing COB, TriCounty Health Network, the Orangeburg County Sheriff’s Office, Shiloh AME Church of Elloree, the SC State Emily E. Clyburn Honors College, the Pansy and Colenzo Evans Family, Hickory Springs Water Company, the Orangeburg Mayor’s Office, Lowe’s of Orangeburg, Felder’s Lawn and Maintenance Service, Walmart Neighborhood Market and the SC State Student Government Association.
Standrika Browning of Lowe’s of Orangeburg with bottled water for students in isolation or quarantine.
Interim SC State President Alexander Conyers joined Orangeburg County Sheriff Leroy Ravenell, Orangeburg Mayor Michael Butler and legendary former SC State football coach Willie Jeffries in marking the occasion at the former DSS office on St. Matthews Road in Orangeburg.
Conyers reminded the volunteers that SC State has taken numerous measures to limit the spread of COVID-19 in the campus community. Along with isolation and quarantine, the university strongly encouraged students and employees to get vaccinated and follow previously published health protocols. The university requires all employees and students to undergo biweekly COVID-19 tests.
(L-R) Orangeburg County Sheriff Leroy Ravenell, Interim SC State President Alexander Conyers, Orangeburg Mayor Michael Butler and former SC State football coach Willie Jeffries
SC State also requires all employees, students and campus visitors to wear face coverings while indoors, except in residence hall rooms, in private offices and while dining. Those on campus also are encouraged to practice social distancing when possible and avoid large gatherings.
SC State maintains a weekly online dashboard for the public to monitor the state of COVID-19 in the campus community.
The SC Department of Biological and Physical Sciences continues to accept support for the We Care effort. Contact Dr. Knowell at 803-533-3674 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Interim President Alexander Conyers with SC State senior biology major Kaya Stokes.