After several major cancellations of events in recent days, including the SXSW conference in Austin and the tech conference SaaStr, Stanford University, which is located in the heart of Silicon Valley in Palo Alto, California, was announced late Friday. that the school would cancel personal classes for the last two weeks of the university's winter quarter to respond to the increasing outbreak of the novel coronavirus [COVID-19].
In a statement released by the university, Stanford's Provost Persis Drell announced that the university would cancel classes two weeks before the university's winter quarterly exams and "as far as feasible" would migrate classes to online formats.
In addition, administration encourages professors to find ways to provide functionally equivalent course material through online formats, and all exams for the winter quarter are expected to be conducted remotely. The policy will take effect immediately after class next Monday, March 9th.
In addition, the university cancels its annual admissions weekend, when newly admitted freshmen visit the palm-fringed campus and learn more about the school before finally deciding where to pursue their bachelor's degrees. Guided tours through the campus were also canceled.
The university today recognized in a separate note that two students are in self-isolation after a “possible exposure” to the novel corona virus. The university emphasized that none of the students tested positive for the infection at this time.
Potential exposures to the novel corona virus have been identified in the San Francisco Bay Area. Stanford himself was at the forefront of responding to the global pandemic and announced earlier this week that it would develop its own infection detection test.