UCF paying students to ensure people wear masks, social distance on campus after spike in COVID-19 cases

ORLANDO, Fla. — The University of Central Florida is tracking a new spike in COVID-19 cases. The school said cases have more than doubled in the last week.

The spike comes as the school rolls out a new program designed to keep exposure to a minimum.

Thanks to CARES Act dollars, UCF was able to hire 60 student ambassadors to help fight the spread on campus.

READ: Students quarantined due to cases of COVID-19 at Orange County elementary school

Each ambassador gets $10 an hour while they encourage students to follow social distancing efforts.

“When I came and I saw there was an opportunity for me to make a change and endorse wearing your mask and filling out what you need to do, I was like, ‘This is perfect because I love doing this.’ I already do it without working here," said Amy Ochoaleyva, a UCF student ambassador.

The university’s goal is to encourage compliance with its COVID-19 safety measures.

Students remind others to mask up, wash up and to check into the COVID self checker they have on campus.

READ: Dual COVID-19, flu tests heading to Central Florida

The self checker asks if students have left the country within the last two weeks, and if they have been in close contact with someone who happened to test positive for the coronavirus in the past 14 days.

Every time a student shows up on campus they have to fill out the self checker. Once it’s completed, they will be cleared for campus.

READ: First confirmed COVID-19 reinfection case reported in U.S.

Each ambassador is equipped with a backpack with extra face masks, hand sanitizers, door pulls and t-shirts.

Katlyn Brieskorn, WFTV.com

Katlyn Brieskorn is a Digital Assignment Editor at WFTV. She joined Channel 9 in July 2019.