College athletics shuts down as third COVID case reported

Clackamas Community College’s sports teams are moving away from in-person training after a third COVID-19 case was tied to the college in the past week. 

“Given the new mandate by the governor and the increasing numbers in Clackamas County, we have paused face to face activities and will shift to online sport classes starting Monday for the next two weeks,” said Jim Martineau, the college’s athletic director, in an email on Friday. 

The college sent an all-staff email on Friday morning to alert employees of a COVID-19 diagnosis for an employee in Randall Hall – home of the college gym, weight room and athletics.

“The employee was on campus this week in Randall Hall, and stated they did not have close contact with any employees or students,” Lori Hall, CCC’s public information officer, wrote in an email to staff. “The employee is currently following self-isolation protocols.”

She did not return calls for comment, but referred questions to Tom Sonoff, the Director of College Safety.  “To our belief, they have not come into contact with any students,” Sonoff said. Sonoff is unaware of any accounts of students or faculty concerns since in-person classes began. However, he has received many emails about mask and distance protocols. He could not comment on whether the campuses will close if more on-campus cases follow. 

The Randall Hall case was the third tied to the college in the past week. The first came Friday, Nov. 6. A second case came two days later; the college said it learned Nov. 8 that a CCC student at the Harmony campus near Clackamas Town Center tested positive for the coronavirus and that the student is currently self-quarantined at home.

The student was in the Harmony East building Thursday, Nov. 5, at 1:30 p.m. 

The third case was an employee who was in Randall on the main Oregon City campus. Martineau said that on any given day, 15-30 students are in Randall Hall at one time.   

“All students and staff wear masks inside Randall at all times (including while they are working out,)” Martineau wrote in an email. “All of our teams have been accessing Randall at different points each week to use the fitness center or training room. The building is closed now thru the weekend for cleaning.”

The Oregon City campus has closed Randall Hall for the next 48 hours. Janitorial staff are to  thoroughly sanitize the building in accordance to CDC guidelines.  

Like most formal in-person education in the state of Oregon, the college basically shut down in March. Almost all classes went online for the spring term that started in April.

Most classes have remained online except for a few programs that have had some in-personal instruction.

Instructors who wanted to meet on campus in person had to have their courses approved by administrators. Courses that have had some in-person instruction include nursing, automotive and welding. The testing center has also had limited appointments available in person, and the college student government has been giving away food boxes outside, in masks and by appointment only. But most of the college campus is quiet.

All positive COVID-19 cases in the college community are reported to the Clackamas County Public Health, according to the email to employees sent Friday morning. The college will work with the Public Health Authority to identify those with whom the individual has been in close contact and assess the significance of the exposure.

The college asked the community to continue to follow safe practices that include basic health and cleaning habits to help prevent spreading illnesses.

The college referred people to its Return to Campus webpage, which has information and updates relevant for all community members. 

This story will be updated as more information becomes available.