Site last updated June 1

COVID-19 Resources and Updates

Ithaca Campus Updates

All classes have moved to online instruction through the end of the spring semester and all in-person summer programs or activities (e.g. summer classes, conferences and events) have been moved online or cancelled.

The university remains open; however, only students who have permission to remain in on-campus housing and essential personnel are allowed on campus. Cornell continues to follow guidance from state and federal public health officials, who will help to determine when it is safe for us to resume normal campus operations, including welcoming faculty, staff, students and visitors back to campus.

Southern Tier: Phase 2 reopening
On May 29, Governor Cuomo announced that the Southern Tier has met the necessary criteria to move to Phase 2 of reopening. While Phase 2 does allow businesses in certain sectors, including higher education administration, to resume in-person activity, and enable us to expand our phased restart of research and related activities to ultimately cover all research, it excludes full campus reopening at this time. As such, all faculty and staff who are currently working remotely should continue to do so. Only those employees who have been previously scheduled to come to campus for work should follow through with their plans. Cornell’s reactivation planning committees continue their work on recommendations for campus reactivation; the results of their work will be announced in late June.

Ithaca and Geneva: Limited research reactivation to begin May 29
Cornell will pursue a phased restart of research and related activities. Research that is related to health and disease, agriculture and food, and national defense, as well as research that supports essential businesses, can begin in a limited manner as soon as May 29; however, buildings must be cleared for restart, sufficient protective equipment must be available for all personnel, and individual lab plans must receive departmental and college approvals before research can resume.

Important information for the Cornell community:


Please continue to practice social (physical) distancing and be sure to check this website frequently, as additional information will continue to be posted as it becomes available.

Reactivation Planning

The university has created planning committees to develop recommendations for reactivating the university.

Cornell faculty, staff and students are encouraged to provide suggestions and feedback on the planning process.

Learn More

Cornell University is closely monitoring the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. The health, safety and well-being of our community is our top priority, and we are working closely with local and state public health officials. Cornell has decided to take a series of proactive measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, including the move to virtual instruction for the Ithaca campus, effective April 6. We will continue to update the community, and this resources website, as new information emerges.

Coronavirus Cases within Cornell’s Ithaca Campus Community

Cornell has been working with public health officials to monitor the ongoing spread of the virus. To date, the Tompkins County Health Department (TCHD) has confirmed 26 cases of the coronavirus within our Ithaca campus community of faculty, staff and students. We were notified of the first confirmed cases on March 20. This news is not unexpected, as the number of confirmed cases in the U.S. continues to rise. Current numbers of all cases in Tompkins County can be found on the TCHD website.

What to know

Cornell is working with TCHD to support the health and safety of the individuals (who have been in isolation and receiving ongoing care) and of the broader community. TCHD, upon confirmation of the positive cases, conducts immediate contact tracing to identify and communicate with close contacts of any positive cases. Due to privacy laws, we cannot disclose the names of the individuals who tested positive. Please know that anyone who fits the CDC definition of a ‘close contact’ will be contacted by the health department to determine next steps, including testing, quarantine, or other medical support.

What you can do

Public health experts are clear that the best way that we can mitigate the spread of COVID-19 is through practicing good personal hygiene and strict adherence to social distancing – minimizing the number of interactions that provide the opportunity for the disease to spread. Adhere to the community mitigation measures that have been embraced by NY state and Tompkins County and which have been proven to reduce the spread of COVID-19.