By Ted Scouten

MIAMI (CBSMiami) – We have been seeing videos popping up across the country on social media showing college students partying and having fun with no masks and not following CDC guidelines.

“They’re just really ignoring the fact that we have a pandemic going on,” said FIU student Diego Perez. “They don’t really care,” he said.

South Florida college students tell us there are parties going on.

“It would be nice to go to a party but I mean, I don’t want to risk getting sick, said FIU Junior Jazmin Lushia. “I’m from New York. I spent a lot of money to come here and I’m not looking to go home anytime soon because of that.”

At the University of Miami, the school newspaper reports an instance from social media, where a large group of freshmen gathered in a dorm. That’s against the rules.

“We had to really crack down on that behavior and make sure that can not go on,” said UM Vice President of Student Affairs, Pat Whitely.

The UM COVID Dashboard shows 190 new positive test results in the last week. With new COVID regulations, UM says it’s noticing an uptick in rules violations. “We can say we’ve had over 300 cases of some kind of infraction, which is 100% over what we had last year in August,” Whitely said.

While UM says the vast majority of students are following the rules, President Dr. Julio Frenk said taking swift action for cases both on and off-campus. “We made it very clear, these are the rules,” he told CNN. “If you can not comply, please don’t come because if you violate the rules there could be very serious consequences, including suspension,” Dr. Frenk said.

UM offers on-campus classes, so now they have 75 student health ambassadors explaining the rules to fellow students, there’s a lot at stake. “If there is a big outbreak we are at risk of closing the campus and canceling classes and moving totally on line where everybody will have to go back home,” said Student Health Ambassador Fedelene Camille.

The Florida International University dashboard shows 14 new cases of COVID-19 last week. Most classes there are remote and not a lot of students live on campus. They tell us there have not had many issues. When there is a situation, they have escalating consequences.

“It could range from as small as reflection paper to as serious as expulsion,” said FIU Associate Vice President of Student Health and Wellness Dr. Breny Dappare Garcia. “We base all that on due process,” she said.

Nova Southeastern University is not sharing how many cases they’ve recorded, and said they’ve had very few problems with student behavior. But if a serious situation arises, they’re ready.

“It could lead to, may result in, the immediate revocation of privileges, which means living in the residents’ halls, having access to buildings,” said Dr. Michelle Manley, Asst. Dean of Student Development.

Miami-Dade and Broward Colleges have not started the semester yet. And very few classes will be held in person. At Miami-Dade College, if you must be on campus, you’ll have to pass a screening first.

“Everyone who passes that checkpoint receive a color-coded wrist band indicating that they have indeed completed screening and are allowed to be on campus,” said Dr. Lenore Rodicio, Provost of Miami-Dade College.

Schools like NSU and the University of Miami that have a lot of in-person classes are keeping a very close eye on all of this, knowing if there’s a big outbreak on campus that could jeopardize in-person classes.

Ted Scouten

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