The University of Wisconsin-Madison has reported over 2,000 coronavirus cases since students returned for the fall semester last month. Just five days after students returned to campus, the school was forced to cancel in-person classes and ordered students to remain in their dorms.
All students, including those living in off-campus fraternity and sorority houses, are required to get tested for COVID-19. If they test positive, the school is now forcing them to pack their bags and move into an isolation dorm.
"The numbers of positive tests that we're seeing on campus have been higher and have increased more rapidly than we had anticipated at this point in this semester," University of Wisconsin-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank said. "It's gone up faster than among most of our peer schools."
There are currently 350 students living in the isolation housing. One of those students, Keir Metter, told CNN he wasn't sure where he contracted the virus and has only experienced minor symptoms.
"Obviously, I don't want to have COVID. But it seemed kind of inevitable," said Metter.
He will have to spend 14 days in the dorm and can only "leave the building for 30 minutes, three times per day to secure fresh air, breakfast, lunch, and dinner."
"This is not your typical freshman year, definitely not," he said. "You can say don't do this and don't do that, but it's very difficult to enforce all that."
The school said that while the seven-day positive rate for students tested on campus is 9.6 percent, the numbers are dropping. On Wednesday (September 16), it was at 2.8 percent, and they reported ten new cases in students. Off-campus testing revealed 35 new student cases.
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