WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) -- Purdue Boiler Gold Rush is underway. Thousands of students are settling into their dorms and houses on campus.
One of Purdue University's biggest social events is the week of BGR move-in day. Under this pandemic, the process is operating much differently. Instead of move-in day being over one weekend, the university has expanded it across five days. Now students are moving in from Friday, Aug. 14 to Tuesday, Aug. 18.
"In the past during those two days, lots of groups coming together, lots of pods across campus, marching through campus," said Ben Shepard, the assistant director for Purdue University's residential life.
He said there are a number of safety procedures in place before families even step out of the car this year.
- Drive-through check-in to get student's IDs and dorm keys instead of students walking up to the booth
- Every person in the car must get their temperature taken.
- Move-in workers using collection bins to avoid touching student's belongings
- Sanitizing collection bins after every use
- Staggering roommate move-in times to help social-distancing
- Students can only have two people help assist them while moving-in
Shepard said Purdue is working to make the best of this new normal.
"College is about academics but it's also about building relationships so we still want that to be at the forefront of what we are attempting to do with our students," said Shepard. "We're so excited to see everybody back, we are all working through this together and it's going to be a really exciting year."
In-coming freshmen are excited to start the school year even in the midst of Covid-19.
"I'm not too worried, I know that Purdue has guidelines in place and I know that I'll follow them and I think the biggest thing that I'm worried about is just getting moved in and adjusting to my new classes and whatnot," said student Parker Tracey.
In May, Purdue laid out its list of safety procedures for students to follow as they head back to campus. Students and families have faith it will work.
"I definitely wanted it to be in person and not online to get the full academic experience and as long as I follow the precautions, I know I'll be okay," said student Rohan Deshpande.
All students were required to get COVID-19 tested before coming back to campus. And they have to show proof of negative results at check-in. Nearly 6,000 students are expected to move in these next few days.