North Texas Daily

Chronicling COVID-19: Coronavirus continues to impact UNT and Denton

Chronicling COVID-19: Coronavirus continues to impact UNT and Denton

Chronicling COVID-19: Coronavirus continues to impact UNT and Denton
April 17
11:00 2020

Since the second week in March, the coronavirus has impacted sports, colleges and universities nationwide and sent millions of people social distancing and working from home. Locally, the virus continues to affect UNT and the city of Denton. To see the first story in our series Chronicling COVID-19:, please visit

UNT consolidates residence halls

On March 31, the university announced it would be consolidating its residence halls, moving students who lived in Traditions and Santa Fe Square residence halls to live in Kerr Hall.

“This decision was made in consult with UNT leadership and was not made lightly,” UNT Housing said in an email to students announcing the consolidation. “We appreciate that this is an inconvenience; however, we believe this is a necessary plan to continue to provide the safest possible living environment.”

The rooms vacated by students in Traditions and Santa Fe will “transition to use by essential personnel from UNT, Denton and other external agencies,” according to an email Housing sent to students about the consolidation.

$2 trillion coronavirus relief bill signed by President Trump

On March 27, President Donald Trump signed the $2 trillion CARES Act — which stands for Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Stimulus. The Act extends the unemployment insurance program, gives most Americans a $1,200 check, allocates $350 billion to be used to help small businesses and gives hospitals funding, among other things.

To read the Daily’s full story breaking down the CARES Act, visit

Local businesses temporarily close, lay off employee

As people stay and work from home, many Denton businesses and restaurants have temporarily closed and laid off employees.

“Business was slow in the weeks leading up to being ordered to close,” said Source Gaming Lounge Owner Robert McAshan in a previous North Texas Daily article. “I had been mainly keeping the business running through my own savings. [We are] looking at a forced closure for at least a month and likely a decrease in social entertainment for months to come, it doesn’t look feasible to keep open, unfortunately.”

Other businesses impacted include restaurants like LSA Burger Co, Barley & Board, Bongo Beaux’s and Earl’s Pizza, which temporarily closed and let go of many of their employees.

To learn more about how COVID-19 is impacting Denton businesses, visit

UNT implementing pass/fail for undergraduates

On April 2, UNT announced that undergraduate students will have the option of choosing Pass/No Pass for Spring 2020 classes amid the pandemic.

“The University of North Texas is committed to the success of our students,” the registrar’s office said on their website. “We understand the challenges that many of our students are facing as they continue to successfully complete courses in pursuit of their degrees amid the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Students will still have the option to adhere to an A-F grading scheme, according to the UNT registrar’s office.

UNT professors, TAs adapt to online teaching

As classes move online and students work from home, UNT professors and teaching assistants are adapting to teaching remotely by using resources such as Zoom and Canvas.

Joshua Young, a graduate teaching assistant for the Physics department, told the North Texas Daily he has fared well during the transition to all online correspondence.

“Teaching through Zoom feels much less personal to me than face to face, but I like it,” Young said in a previous article. “I teach recitations for Professor Krokhin [Arkadii]. I teach seven sections a week.”

To learn more about how UNT professors and TAs are adapting to online classes, visit

Most summer classes will be online, UNT says

Most summer classes are planning to be taught online, UNT President Neal Smatresk told students in an email on April 13.

As of right now, Summer II classes will continue in person, but that could change in the coming weeks and months.

“In addition, and in recognition of the financial impact COVID-19 is having on our students, we will provide emergency financial relief to many of our students enrolled in summer courses, which will appear on student tuition and fee statements in the coming weeks,” Smatresk said. “We are doing everything possible to find ways to help students continue their education during the summer months.”

Summer financial aid is now available and summer 2020 registration is open.

To follow all of the North Texas Daily’s coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic, please visit

Graphs by Lizzy Spangler

Featured Image: The University of North Texas insignia is displayed on a side wall of the UNT Union on a bright blue day on April 7, 2020. Image by Bertha Angela Smith.

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Lizzy Spangler

Lizzy Spangler

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1 Comment

  1. Dr. Jim
    Dr. Jim April 19, 13:17

    As a retired Docter, who graduated from NT, swiching to a Pass/Fail system is guarantying failure. Ecnomically, you are making it easier to get in, which may financially help you but spells doom for students who will flock to UNT to be laughing stocks in the world. If UNT was a trade school, teaching carpentry or being a mechanic, Pass/Fail would be applicable. No Graduate School would ever have admission based on a PASS. This scares me. The GPA really means something in the professional world.

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