Safety requirements for on-campus activities

July 9, 2020

Dear Ithaca and Geneva faculty, staff and graduate students,

Following the phased reactivation of our research enterprise over the past month, many of you are back to conducting research and beginning to work on campus. As a reminder, all faculty, staff and students who have been approved to resume on-campus work or research through the university’s reactivation process are required to complete the Daily Check before arriving on campus or accessing campus facilities. Importantly, even if you are approved to return to campus, if you can work remotely then you should continue to do so.

Everyone approved to be on campus must adhere to Cornell’s guidelines for wearing face coverings and maintaining physical distancing of at least 6 feet from others to help ensure our campus remains a safe and healthy environment.

Face coverings are required:

  • Outdoors: A face covering or mask must be readily available on your person (e.g., worn around neck) when you are outdoors on campus. The face covering must be worn when it is NOT feasible to maintain physical distancing measures (i.e., at least 6 feet of separation from others). To be clear: It is not acceptable for any person to be on Cornell’s campus without an accessible face covering.
  • Indoors: A face covering must be worn prior to entering any Cornell building. Face coverings must be worn at all times in common areas, such as elevators, lobbies and bathrooms; when moving around buildings and working in shared spaces; as well as in common areas of residence halls, dining halls, community centers, the Cornell Store and other retail locations and gathering spaces across campus. Face coverings may only be removed when alone in a cubicle, office or other unit-designated area following physical distancing guidelines.

As we prepare for the start of the fall semester, which, as President Pollack announced last week, will include in-person classes and a residential living experience, it will be essential for all of us to model positive behaviors that help to reduce the spread of the virus. If you observe individuals who are not adhering to these guidelines, we ask you to request that they do so or leave university facilities. (And if you, yourself, are not adhering to these guidelines, you should expect to be requested to do so or leave university facilities.)

Students studying in Ithaca this fall – whether in person or online – will also be held to a set of behavioral expectations as part of Cornell’s carefully planned health and safety measures that include robust testing, monitoring, enhanced cleaning and modifications to the spaces in which we live, work, research and teach. They will be looking to you to gauge the seriousness of Cornell’s commitment to observing and enforcing these expectations.

On a final note, I cannot stress enough that access to all university buildings is strictly prohibited for any individuals who have not been authorized to work or conduct approved activities on campus.

These rules are in place to ensure everyone’s safety and to allow us to continue to reactivate campus so that we are prepared to welcome more faculty, staff and students to campus this fall. Thank you for being responsible members of our campus community.


Michael Kotlikoff