Runner Talks: CSUB president and top admins respond to student concerns over coronavirus response

Carlos Hernandez

The Runner Staff met virtually with CSU Bakersfield administrators, President Lynette Zelezny, Vernon Harper, and Thom Davis to discuss student concerns with the COVID-19 pandemic on Wednesday, March 18.  

  As of Thursday, March 19, the CSUB campus will remain open. Many emergency services are still available to students, according to CSUB President Zelezny. The food pantry will remain open as an access point for students in need, and dining is grab-and-go but still available. Other dining options such as the campus Starbucks and the Runner Café are still open. 

  For healthcare and mental health services, the CSUB Health Center and Counseling Center will remain open but are now servicing students online or through telemedicine. These centers are still staffed and are available to address student needs.  

  If a student is fearful that they are infected or have contracted COVID-19, they are advised to call the health center. The health center will then give the student directives.  

  “Students will have daily healthcare needs, and those are all continuing, the services will just be delivered in a different way,” Zelezny said.  

 Zelezny also addressed the process of partial refunds for students.  

  A directive coming from the CSU system stated that refunds in regards to student fees will not be issued to students. Zelezny explained that these fees will not be eligible for refunding, since instruction is still in progress at CSUB.  Aspects of the refunds will be for parking passes, housing, and dining services. 

  “It is certain that we will be moving forward with those refunds,” Zelezny said. 

  Student fees that contributed to services such as the Student Recreational Center are considered mandatory fees, which are nonrefundable, according to Thom Davis.  

  “Those are fees that are along with tuition,” Zelezny said.