The University of Alabama has disciplined 639 students and suspended 33 for COVID-19-related rule violations, a spokesperson confirmed Thursday. The University has also sanctioned three student organizations and another group is facing suspension from campus.

The University of Alabama representative said the 33 suspended students have been effectively barred from the Tuscaloosa campus while their conduct cases are considered and moved through the adjudication process.

"Student suspensions could range in length depending on the severity of the conduct," the University said. "Any speculation about refunds for these students is premature."

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The roughly 600 other sanctions vary in severity including warnings, formal marks on the students' records and probation."

The UA spokesman did not identify any of the four student organizations facing sanctions for breaking COVID-19 rules.

According to the UA System's COVID-19 Dashboard, which was updated last Friday, almost 2,000 students on the Tuscaloosa campus have tested positive for COVID-19 since in-person instruction resumed in mid-August.

Dr. Richard Friend, the dean of UA's College of Community Health Sciences, said he believes the virus is being primarily transmitted at bars and student gatherings, not in classrooms on campus.

Friend said last week that "nothing has gone wrong" on the Tuscaloosa campus, and that the University anticipated and prepared for COVID cases on campus, citing its designated isolation and quarantine living spaces, the widespread availability of affordable testing and more.

All student events on campus are banned until at least Monday, and all dining halls have switched to grab-and-go options only, preventing students from congregating and eating within.

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