Luchs Hall

A view of Luchs Hall and other buildings in its complex on South Green at Ohio University. Photo by Conor Morris.

A social gathering of roughly 30 people in an isolation residence hall over the weekend has sparked an investigation by Ohio University.

An Ohio University Housing and Residence Life staff member entered Luchs Hall, which is currently isolation housing for COVID-19 positive students, on Friday night to assist a student who was locked out of a room, an OU press release stated.

Upon entering, the staff member reportedly discovered roughly 30 people congregating in a common space, violating university directives for facial coverings and physical distancing, as well as consuming alcoholic beverages.

University leadership was notified of the situation the next day and called upon all 48 residents of Luchs Hall to attend a mandatory outdoor meeting with representatives from the President’s office, the Dean of Students’ office, and Community Standards and Student Responsibility.

Meetings were held with permission from the Athens City-County Health Department and were conducted in groups of approximately 15 people per session.

At the meeting, students were required to wear a facial covering and were seated six feet apart.

University representatives notified Luchs Hall residents that if there is reason to believe they attended the Oct. 16 gathering, they could be found in violation of the student code of conduct, as these actions could be considered a violation of public health orders, OU’s Presidential Health Directives and other university policies.

“The University will thoroughly investigate this matter, and all individuals found to be in violation of the public health orders and University policy are subject to both criminal and/or University judicial proceedings,” the OU release stated.

“By failing to comply with public health orders and University policy, these residents put others at risk, including the staff member who entered Luchs Hall to assist a resident, the Culinary Services staff who deliver their meals, and the custodial staff that service Luchs Hall. Ohio University’s obligation is to the safety and security of our students, faculty, and staff, and we take this matter very seriously.”

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