News Briefs 2/7

Mary Dupuis, News Editor

GV COVID-19 campus data update

The Grand Valley State University community has had a cumulative total of 7,053 cases since Aug. 1, 2020. The university’s update for this brief was from Friday, Feb. 4.

Through testing results this past week, GVSU’s Virus Action team have so far reported 385 current active cases including 12 faculty members, 44 staff members, 82 on-campus students, 142 “off-campus Ottawa” students, 78 “off-campus Kent” students and 27 “off-campus other” students with active COVID-19 cases.

“Current active cases” is the count of positive cases reported to the Virus Action Team over the past 10 days.  This is an estimate of those currently in isolation, assuming a ten-day symptomatic period following the reporting of a positive test result. Actual periods of isolation are specific to the individual and determined by the county health department.

Vaccination: GVSU encourages all students, faculty and staff to receive the COVID-19 vaccination as soon as possible. All students, faculty and staff are required to be fully vaccinated, barring a medical or religious exemption or postponement. According to the COVID-19 data dashboard, an 80% vaccination rate in the GVSU community is required to reach herd immunity and minimal virus transmission.

Currently, approximately 86% of students report being fully vaccinated, while approximately 93% of faculty and staff reports being fully vaccinated.

There are currently 2,216 students and 141 faculty/staff with approved vaccination exemptions.

Testing and Incidence: GVSU’s own testing program has performed 123,826 tests overall since Aug. 1, 2020, for a cumulative positivity rate of 2.16% from the latest update as of last week. A total of 1,483 tests were performed over the last seven days.

“GV Surveillance” includes the GV/Spectrum administered programs of randomized testing, regular testing of high-risk groups and invited testing of individuals connected to potential clusters. A calendar is available. “GV Total” includes surveillance testing plus all symptomatic/exposure tests administered by Spectrum.

GV mourns the death of Beatrice “Bea” Idema

Grand Valley State University and West Michigan communities are mourning the death of philanthropist Beatrice “Bea” Idema who died on Feb. 3. 

Idema and her late husband, Bill, were longtime supporters of the university. Their donations helped to establish the Mary Idema Pew Library Learning and Information Commons on the Allendale campus in 2013. 

She was honored with the university’s Enrichment Award in 2013 and later inducted into the Hall of Fame. 

In 2015, GVSU also awarded Idema with an honorary doctor of public service degree.

“Bea was a role model for philanthropists and will continue to set the example for women who give in this community,” President Philomena V. Mantella said in a press release. “She was always interested in Grand Valley students and the impact they would have on the future of our region. She had a spirit of giving that was truly special. Our hearts are with the Idema family and all those who loved Bea.”