In order to minimize contact with those beyond our campus community, the university will not permit in-person concerts or lectures involving outside guests throughout the fall semester. With careful planning, colleges, units, departments and registered student organizations are permitted to hold in-person gatherings or activities of 10 people or fewer (see details below). However, many events will continue to be held virtually, and the university continues to examine creative, safe opportunities for converting other events and activities into online formats.

University-sponsored events and activities

In-person, university-sponsored events and activities of 10 people or fewer are now permitted (face masks and physical distancing are required). This applies to business activities sponsored by a college, department, unit or lab – whether on or off campus.

  • Anyone attending an on-campus meeting or activity must be approved to be on campus.
  • Faculty and staff approved to be on campus must complete the Daily Check each day they plan to go to campus, and complete surveillance testing on their assigned testing frequency and day. In order to continue to manage the density of campus and protect the health and safety of our community, employees who can fully perform their work responsibilities remotely, and who are not currently approved to be on campus, should not be approved to be on campus solely for the purposes of attending an event or activity.
  • Visitors are prohibited from entering campus facilities.

Student Organizations and Gatherings

For registered student organizations, small group gatherings of 10 or fewer may be held with careful planning (face masks and physical distancing required). All events must be registered in CampusGroups, and attendance must be taken by the sponsoring organization. Each person attending an in-person activity must “check-in” and “check-out” within CampusGroups. Information on how to reserve space on campus will be communicated to registered student organizations from Campus Activities. Please review how to create an event and how to track attendance in advance of making any reservations. There will be no in-person activities after November 29, 2020. In-person activities are planned to resume in the spring.

The Campus Activities Office also has resources available to help students connect virtually, including student organization support drop-In hours, virtual campus events on campus groups, assistance with Zoom, virtual engagement opportunities and much more.

As a precautionary measure there will be no in-person student events or activities at the beginning of the spring 2021 semester. Once students have completed quarantine, and we are confident that our virus prevalence is low, we can once again expect to ease restrictions to allow for small in-person activities and gatherings as the semester progresses.


On July 8, the Ivy League announced that its member institutions would not hold intercollegiate athletics events and competitions prior to the end of the fall 2020 semester. Practices and other athletic training opportunities for enrolled student athletes are permitted, provided they conform to university safety procedures and applicable state regulations.

On Nov. 12, the Ivy League announced that its member institutions will not conduct intercollegiate athletics competitions in winter sports during the 2020-21 season. In addition, competitions for fall sports during the upcoming spring semester will not be held, and intercollegiate athletics competitions for spring sports are postponed through at least the end of February 2021.


We are excited to celebrate the accomplishments of our May 2021 graduates, and of course we dearly hope that we can have an in-person ceremony. Unfortunately, it remains too early to determine if that will be possible. We expect to provide an update on May commencement planning in early 2021. Pending the progression of the pandemic, Cornell has announced the following plans for upcoming Commencement celebrations:

  • Commencement festivities for the Class of ’21 will be held over Memorial Day weekend, Saturday-Sunday, May 29-30, 2021. 
  • December 2020 graduates will celebrate their Commencement with the Class of ’21 on Memorial Day weekend.
  • The university hopes to host in-person Commencement celebrations for the Class of 2020 on June 5-6, 2021.


A special 5th Reunion weekend will be held June 3-6, 2021, for our young alumni classes of 2015 and 2016, and Reunion 2021 will be held June 10-13. Alumni are encouraged to visit the Reunion website for more information.