Update on Phase 2 Reopening of the Southern Tier

May 29, 2020

Dear Colleagues,

This afternoon, 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 it enables 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.

As shared in a message to campus on May 22, we are approaching the restart of our research enterprise carefully and in stages. 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. Our research reactivation currently excludes activities in New York City, as different regions are currently in different phases of the New York state plan for reopening.

As President Pollack noted in her message yesterday, Cornell’s reactivation planning committees continue their work on recommendations for campus reactivation, and the results of their work will be announced in late June. We will also continue to provide opportunities for faculty, staff and students to give their feedback on our ongoing reactivation planning.

We appreciate your patience during this time of uncertainty, and we look forward to all of us being back on campus together again.


Michael Kotlikoff

Mary Opperman
Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer