Amid rising coronavirus infections on campus, students at the University of New Hampshire are being asked by school officials to consider sheltering in place to curb the growing spread of COVID-19 among students and university staff.

In a letter to students distributed Wednesday, UNH Senior Vice Provost for Student Life Kenneth Holmes wrote about his concern about "rapidly rising COVID-19 cases at UNH," the email read, adding that "for ultimate safety" students might consider sheltering in place.

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"For ultimate safety," Holmes wrote, "consider sheltering in place—only leaving your room to attend classes and labs, to get meals, for safe exercise, to study in the library or for other essential tasks."

The last day of in-person classes at UNH this semester is November 20, and Holmes said that a significant number of students had already left campus to finish the semester remotely, be it voluntary or by eviction.

"If you are planning to return to your permanent residence for the winter break," Holmes wrote, "you should take every possible precaution to reduce your risk of contracting the virus before you leave. Continue to submit your COVID-19 tests until you are ready to leave campus."

As of Thursday, UNH had 108 active coronavirus infections and 393 students in quarantine. Among the active cases, 96 were students and 11 were staff members. The university estimates it is testing just over 3,000 people per day.

"We have seen an increase in positive cases among students since the Halloween weekend," Holmes sent in a separate email to colleagues. "While we still do not have any known transmission from within a classroom, let’s all be very vigilant in the last few days. Our testing and tracing team has been very effective getting students into isolation and quarantine quickly and all that data has been uploaded into the Wildcat Pass."

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