Clemson University students face discipline for violation of mask rules

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CLEMSON, S.C. (WSPA)- Clemson University’s Code of Conduct has been updated to include strict guidelines for preventing the spread of Covid-19.

The university is requiring masks in university buildings, buses, and even outdoor spaces on campus when social distancing isn’t possible. Students who repeatedly break the rules face discipline and even suspension or expulsion.

Students told 7News that wearing a mask is a small price to experience the freedom of college life.

“I would wear a mask any day over being at home, no offense to my parents,” Clemson freshman Audrey Goodwin said.

The rules for preventing Covid-19 follow students off-campus, too.

“For instance, a student who is found in violation of our physical distancing rule who hosts a large gathering at his or her off- campus residence in one of our neighboring towns would be subject to sanctions underneath the code,” said Philip Sikes, who is the communications director of student affairs at Clemson University.

Sikes said those who break the new rules about face coverings could face discipline through the Office of Community and Ethical Standards. Some have already learned that lesson.

According to Sikes, dozens of students cited by police for violating the city’s mask ordinance a few weeks ago were referred to the OCES and had to pay $75 to complete an educational course that includes activities like personal reflection.

“It’s designed really to allow us to resolve minor offenses and violations among students,” Sikes said.

Since then, Sikes said the number of citations has dropped. On the first day back on campus, students said people were taking masking seriously.

“I’ve seen only good things for masks,” said Clemson freshman Jason Bove. “Even like in the dorms, it’s been pretty good.”

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