The recent spike in Upstate New York coronavirus cases has been linked to students testing positive at SUNY campuses. Over the weekend UAlbany reported 16 new cases and SUNY Oneonta also reported 16 new cases according to The Times Union.

There have been reports, including social media posts, showing college students not following social distancing recommendations, mask-wearing, and avoiding large groups. Several videos and pictures have surfaced showing college parties and students ignoring the coronavirus threat. Some students have been sent home and even suspended in some cases.

That's what inspired SUNY Chancellor Jim Malatras to announce the launch of “Mask Up or Pack Up,” on Monday. It's a campaign to promote social distancing, mask-wearing, and following the pandemic safety guidelines.

It pretty much is a "tell it like it is" campaign. Either you put a mask on to protect yourself and your fellow students, professors, and staff, or you can pack up and go home.

The campaign will allow students to encourage their fellow students to follow safety guidelines and make college campuses safe to stay open this year through creative videos.

According to the SUNY Mask Up or Pack Up website: Along with our campuses, SUNY will be creating an awareness campaign throughout the fall semester to help increase awareness of our campus safety protocols and COVID-19 safety measures. As a part of this, students can submit a 30-second video that includes a message about the importance of wearing face masks to stay safe from COVID-19 using a smartphone or any video capture device. An element of school spirit should be included, such as a t-shirt, sweatshirt, sign, or other. We want you to tell your classmates what it means to be safe during COVID-19 and how by following safety protocols, we can come to bring campus life back to normal. Your work will be credited in each placement it receives, from digital and social media to on-campus installations.

Students can submit their "Mask Up or Pack Up" Videos HERE.

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