Video showing a large gathering of partygoers near the University of North Georgia in Dahlonega, Georgia, has drawn criticism as the nation continues to battle with the novel coronavirus.
According to CNN, the large group gathered at an off-campus housing apartment complex near the university on Saturday night, many of the partygoers appearing to be unmasked and not social distancing.
“We are disappointed that many of our students chose to ignore COVID-19 public health guidance by congregating in a large group without social distancing or face coverings,” the university’s executive director of communications Sylvia Carson told the network. “The University of North Georgia continues to emphasize to our students and university community that everyone has an individual responsibility both on and off campus to follow guidance from the Georgia Department of Public Health and the CDC to prevent the spread of the virus.”
Currently, there is no requirement for masks in Georgia. Governor Brian Kemp has shied away from issuing a statewide mandate, although he has said his office would “strongly encourage” using them. That being said, the governor has also actively challenged local officials who sought to require masks in their cities.
According to CNN, the university does require that students wear masks, but the mandate only applies when they are in the university’s buildings and facilities.
Last week, a Georgia high school also came under scrutiny after viral photos of a crowded hallway with unmasked students circulated on social media.