As you know, the number of cases of COVID-19 in Sellery and Witte has been of great concern, resulting in the current two-week quarantine of these buildings. Beginning early last week, a rapid rise in infections has resulted in roughly 20% of Sellery and Witte residents testing positive for COVID-19, which is cause for significant concern. A building quarantine is the most effective step to limit virus transmission. Without serious intervention and behavioral changes, infection rates will continue to grow and threaten both our residents and the broader Madison community. In this pandemic, when people choose to not follow campus rules and public health guidelines, they endanger not just themselves and fellow students, but also the chance of returning to our original hybrid-model which we know our students want.
The University has the authority under State law to protect the health and safety of those on the campus. Policies of the Board of Regents also empower the Chancellor to develop public health polices and require those on campus to comply with those policies.
If the current quarantine does not reduce cases of COVID-19 in Sellery and Witte back to much lower levels by the end of this quarantine, University Housing may be forced to take more drastic action with these two residence halls.
We thank all of you who are following the rules, but unfortunately, we know some residents are not, and this will have very serious consequences if behaviors do not change. As a result, we are reiterating the requirements and consequences for Sellery and Witte residents below to be as clear as possible:
Maintain Public Health Protocols
- Wear face coverings at all times except when in their room with the door closed.
- Maintain 6-feet distance from others, including outdoors and in common areas such as hallways, lounges, and bathrooms.
- Monitor for symptoms of COVID-19.
- Comply with required COVID-19 surveillance testing.
Follow Enhanced Restriction Protocols During Quarantine
- No visitors to these residence halls.
- No visitors in rooms (only room owners can be in the rooms).
- No grouping in lounges or public areas of less than 6 feet distance at all times, even with masks.
- Residents may only leave the building for 30 minutes, three times per day to secure fresh air, breakfast, lunch, and dinner at the Gordon Dining & Event Center during designated times in an appropriately distanced and masked fashion.
- Residents may not leave the grounds of the residence hall or Gordon, or visit any unapproved destination such as local businesses.
- Pre-Approval for exit privileges can be requested in certain emergency situations (medical appointment, prescriptions, etc.) via the Quarantine Exemption Request Form.
- If you agree to remain in Witte and Sellery after today, violation of any of the above behavioral requirements will result in immediate removal from your residence hall and revocation of your Housing contract with no refund.
- Violations will also be reported to the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards for additional student discipline, which could include emergency suspension from UW-Madison.
- If residents do not feel they will be able to comply with these critical behavioral requirements, University Housing will accept contract cancellations through the My UW Housing portal and will return prorated housing funds and unused dining funds. It’s important to note that those who leave prior to the end of the two-week period of enhanced restrictions are doing so against public health guidance and are expected to quarantine at their destination.
We really want to make this opportunity work for you and your fellow Badgers. We have a chance at reducing the infection rate, but only with 100% compliance. We will enforce all rules to make this possible, because the current infection rates are dangerous to students and community members alike. We want to protect those who are following the rules. For ongoing updates, please continue to visit our FAQ page. Thank you for your cooperation. For questions, please use our Contact form.