VILLANOVA, Pa. (CBS) — Villanova University on Wednesday said it’s bringing home study abroad students in Italy due to an increase of coronavirus cases in the northern part of the country. University officials say 32 students will be returning home, but it’s unclear when they’ll be flying back to the country.
CBS3 is told students will be going straight home for their spring break. But university officials have not yet answered whether those students will first be quarantined.
“All the hype shouldn’t be so crazy,” Villanova senior Julia Wallace said. “We’re just being careful to make sure that people are safe.”
Be cautious but don’t panic is mindset of Villanova students that CBS3 spoke with Wednesday night after the university made the decision to fly 32 students studying abroad in Italy back home due to the spread of the coronavirus.
“Everyone’s just trying to keep it quiet, like trying not to think about it,” sophomore Chris Meyer said. “I feel like we just don’t want to think about it, just because it’s a scary thing.”
Outside of Asia, Italy has the worst outbreak of the coronavirus with at least 325 cases and at least 10 deaths as of Wednesday.
A Villanova spokesperson says the university will be flying back from Urbino, Milan, Rome and Florence, Italy.
Students learned about the decision through a campus-wide email.
“I think for the safety of them, they should be coming back to campus,” freshman Sydney Harris said. “But for the overall community, they should be in quarantine just to keep the rest of the Villanova students safe.”
CBS3 received mixed reactions about students flying back to the country without being quarantined before returning to campus.
“I hope it doesn’t come to that. I don’t think it should come to that,” one student said.
“I think they should definitely be tested,” another student said.
Students say they trust that Villanova is making the right decision.
“I’m sure that they’ll take all the necessary precautions to ensure the safety of the student body,” sophomore Wesley Erickson said.
A spokesperson says the university has an emergency preparedness team who is closely monitoring the situation.