University of Minnesota sees 750% jump in weekly COVID-19 cases since Halloween

A chart depicted the weekly total of positive COVID-19 cases at the University of Minnesota. (University of Minnesota)

As the state of Minnesota experiences a surge in coronavirus cases, the University of Minnesota campus is seeing its own spike as well.

From Nov. 6 to Nov. 12, the university reported 263 cases on its campus COVID-19 dashboard. That weekly total is about a 750 percent jump from the weekly total (31 cases) from just two weeks ago - right before Halloween.

This week's 263 cases come from 1,336 tests, making a positivity rate of 19.7 percent. Since the pandemic began there have been 7,026 cases at the university.

To finish the semester, the campus will shift to full distance learning after Thanksgiving break. This plan was set earlier this year.

Minnesota Governor Tim Walz is asking Minnesotans making Thanksgiving dinner plans to comply with new restrictions about social gatherings.

“It’ll be a hard Thanksgiving,” Walz told reporters Tuesday afternoon when asked about families gathering during the holidays. 

CDC: Thanksgiving gathering guidance

The state’s new guidelines introduced Tuesday put a limit on 10 people at social gatherings from a total of three households. Gov. Walz said the goal is compliance and not necessarily enforcement heading into the holidays.

“We’re not going into someone’s home and arresting them on Thanksgiving,” he said.

According to the governor, over 70% of coronavirus outbreaks in Minnesota from June to November have a direct link back to weddings, private social gatherings, and late nights at bars and restaurants.

HOLIDAY PLANS VS RISKS: Map shows real-time COVID-19 risk for gatherings, by county