Hundreds of UMass Amherst students were under review for potential COVID-19 policy violations, and a fraternity has been placed on suspension.

According to a story reported on by Western Mass News, this came as coronavirus cases were on the rise both on and off-campus.

Nine days into the spring semester at UMass Amherst, the university cracked down on students breaking COVID-19 safety rules.

Western Mass News has learned 354 students have been referred to the dean of students for potential violations of the university’s COVID-19 protocols and 332 of them are on-campus residents.

The Theta Chi Fraternity has been placed on interim suspension pending an investigation by the student conduct and community standards office. A UMass Amherst spokesperson said the chapter has been ordered to cease all activities.

UMass Amherst Spokesperson Edward Blaguszewski said, "Based on the evidence we have, that was potentially one event that was also a risk."

The university said the frat party in question has not been determined to be a super spreader event at this time but said in a statement, “student socialization in large and small groups, both on-campus and off-campus, contributed to the recent increase in cases of COVID-19 at UMass Amherst.”

The current UMass Amherst COVID-19 dashboard reports 432 active COVID cases right now, on and off-campus, and all students have been ordered to shelter in place for two weeks.

With these new restrictions, on-campus students cannot go to the gym, dine-in at restaurants, or socialize with their friends in-person. They can only get tested for COVID.

Please check out the initial story for much more information at Western Mass News' website here and we thank them for the update.

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