It’s been over a year since Babson College, Wellesley College, and MassBay have closed their campuses to all but students and employees of the schools due to the pandemic, and there is no sign of the ban being lifted anytime soon. Perhaps thinking back to last March, when cars lined up along routes 16 and 135 and unloaded piles of people who flocked to the Wellesley College campus, a rep contacted us with this message: “We are trying to get the word out to folks that the Wellesley campus is still closed to the public right now due to the pandemic—that includes folks walking to campus and then walking on campus, even outside. We know with the lovely spring weather and the state opening up some regulations that folks are very eager to get out, but this policy hasn’t changed and we are really hoping that folks can respect this for the time being.”
This Wellesley College closure includes the 2.5 mile walking path around Lake Waban, a very special spot where Wellesley residents are itching to return. The entire lake is surrounded by private property, some owned by Wellesley College, some by the Hunnewell family.
We checked in with Babson and MassBay representatives, who echoed the plan to proceed with a cautious approach. MassBay, which this year is celebrating its 60th anniversary (albeit quietly), is delivering most of its learning online, with very limited academic activities taking place on its Wellesley campus. Babson, too, is waiting to welcome neighbors back to enjoy campus when it is “safe to do so.”
No word yet on when this all might change. Policies are likely to be revisited as vaccination rates rise and the pandemic slows down.