Making progress toward a healthier campus

Over 70% of students vaccinated


Lyric Trempe

Tommy Thompson addresses the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater community in celebration of reaching a 70% vaccination rate.

Carina Lopez, Campus News Editor

The total number of vaccinated students against COVID-19 surpassed the 70 percent mark in late September – a goal set by UW-System that was celebrated alongside UW System President Tommy Thompson. 

“We’re ecstatic to host this event and to welcome President Thompson to UW-Whitewater,” said Interim Chancellor Jim Henderson in a news release. “Our vaccination numbers are the result of a concerted effort to keep our community as safe as possible during the pandemic. Our students, faculty and staff have embraced that goal, and I look forward to celebrating this achievement.”

As of Oct. 18, the university reported a 74 percent vaccination rate. The remainder of the student population continues to get tested every week. 

By reaching this goal, vaccinated students are now eligible to be selected from a drawing of 70 scholarships valued at $7,000 each as part of the 70 for 70 vaccination incentive offered to all UW students. All records submitted by Oct. 30 get the chance to win. 

Apart from that, vaccinated students continue to get randomly selected to win $500 through a weekly drawing. 

Students can also get the chance to be entered into a raffle to get their first choice of a residence hall for the next school year. Two students will be awarded “first assignment rights,” the university said. 

At the celebration, hosted on Oct. 27,  Thompson joined UW-Whitewater to celebrate the accomplishment with performances by the members of the Warhawk Marching Band and remarks from university and student leaders.

“I said, ‘I want to challenge the campuses to compete against each other to get 70 percent of their students vaccinated, and we can do it.’ We had bets – some of the doubting people bet five campuses would do it, some said six, some said seven. I said 12. We have 11 today and the twelfth one is 23 students away from hitting 70 percent and I’m sure they’re going to do it,” said Thompson. 

He expressed the excitement other schools have shown to be back on campus and noted that the Warhawk spirit he saw was undeniable.

“I’m just so thankful that the students stood up and said ‘we want our schools open and we want to go to class and we want to have a good time’ and that’s why I’m down here to celebrate with you,” said Thompson. 

Getting more students to get vaccinated helps lower the number of positive cases on campus.

According to the COVID-19 Dashboard, as of Oct. 19, 2021, 103 students tested positive. They are broken down as follows:

  • Off-campus students: 70 positive antigen tests of 5205 total administered tests 
  • On-campus students: 33 positive antigen tests of 4129 total administered tests
  • Employees  6 positive antigen tests of 559 total administered tests  
  • Community members: 198 positive antigen tests of 2309 total administered tests

All PCR tests were grouped together with no clear distinction between students, employees and community members. There were 26 positive tests of 428 total administered tests.

This data continues to be updated every Monday. 

The most recent update made on Oct. 26, 202, does not reflect an accurate number. 

“All tests were grouped together by new testing company. This will be fixed in further results,” the site read. 

For more information, visit the Warhawks Are Back site.