COVID-19 Safety Information

Update: The SUNY system no longer requires a COVID-19 vaccine for students. SUNY Cortland strongly suggests all members of the university community be fully vaccinated and boosted against the virus, but it is not mandatory.

Overview

SUNY Cortland is committed to protecting the health of the entire campus community during the COVID-19 pandemic. University policy is based on public health and safety guidelines issued by New York state, the State University of New York, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Cortland County Health Department.

This page explains SUNY Cortland’s policies and procedures regarding COVID-19.  This guidance may change, and updates to policies will be communicated on this page and by email to the campus community.

Quick answers

Some of the following policies are new or have been revised for the 2023-24 academic year. Additional details for students and employees are outlined in those sections on this page. Any changes or updates to these policies will be communicated by email.

Vaccination and boosters

In line with SUNY’s updated guidance from April 11, 2023, the COVID-19 vaccine is no longer required for students. COVID-19 vaccination and boosters, however, are strongly encouraged for students. Faculty and staff are also encouraged to stay up to date on vaccinations and boosters. 

COVID-19 vaccination shots and boosters will be available on campus this fall during SUNY Cortland’s annual flu shot clinic. Appointments also can be scheduled using New York state’s online portal or vaccines.gov for sites outside of New York. 

Students enrolled in an internship or other program at a third-party location must continue to comply with all health and safety guidelines imposed by that location.

Length of isolation

Campus community members who test positive should stay home and isolate for at least five days, based on CDC guidance. They must wear a high-quality mask if they must be around others at home and in public.

Isolation housing

Students who test positive have the option of returning home to their permanent address for their five-day isolation, or to isolate in place in their residence hall room or apartment. The university will have limited quarantine and isolation housing on campus for residential students who are unable to do either of those options.  

Class absences

Students should contact each of their instructors to let them know of a positive test. Class absences due to COVID-19 are handled like any other absence due to illness. Students should work with individual faculty members and follow policies outlined in the SUNY Cortland Handbook and Catalogs for making up missed work. 

Face coverings

The university does not require face coverings. However, students who test positive should wear a mask at all times when not alone. For students isolating in place, this includes all roommates. All students who test positive for COVID-19 should wear a well-fitting mask for five days after ending isolation. 

Please be aware that SUNY Cortland may reinstate an indoor face covering policy if recommended by local, state or federal health organizations. 

Information for students


What to do if you are symptomatic

All students should be aware of possible COVID-19 symptoms, including fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting or diarrhea.

Symptomatic students

Any students who have any symptoms of COVID-19 should contact Student Health Service at 607-753-4811 on the first day they are ill, even if symptoms are mild. This applies to students who are fully vaccinated. If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, do not attend class or any social gathering unless your symptoms have cleared or you have received negative test results. 

Symptomatic students can be tested for COVID-19 at Student Health Service, in Van Hoesen Hall, Room B-26. They are required to wear masks while there.

Rapid testing

Students are encouraged to use antigen rapid tests, which are available in drug stores and other retail locations, if they feel ill or suspect they have been exposed to the virus. Tests are available for on-campus students in residence hall offices. They are available for off-campus students at Student Health Service. 

Evening and weekend care

During the evening or weekends, symptomatic students should contact an off-campus health provider such as an urgent care facility or Guthrie Cortland Medical Center.

Students who test positive for COVID-19

If campus residents test positive for COVID-19, they must notify their residence hall director and either return home to their permanent address to isolate or isolate in place. Both the ill student and all roommates must take precautions against COVID-19 infection such as wearing masks and social distancing. If they are unable to do that, the university provides limited quarantine space on campus in the Judson H Taylor Leadership House. Off-campus residents who test positive for COVID-19 should isolate in their off-campus residence or at home.

Length of isolation

Students who test positive for COVID-19 should stay home and isolate for at least five days, based on CDC guidance. Students must wear a high-quality mask if they must be around others at home and in public.

Notifying professors

Students who test positive should contact each of their instructors individually to notify them that they have COVID and are isolating.  

Missing classes 

  • Absences due to COVID-19 are treated the same as any extended absence. Students should work with instructors individually regarding missed coursework. 
  • Professors are not expected to provide online or synchronous instruction for students in isolation, but they may be able to provide handouts, slides or other material you can use to make up missed work. Keeping up with assignments is a student’s responsibility. 
  • Check your syllabus to see what work you are missing.  
  • Reach out to classmates about getting notes from classes you’ve missed.  
  • Schedule a phone or virtual appointment during your instructor’s office hours to go over missed material or work.   
  • Schedule a virtual appointment at the Learning Center or the Writing Center to help you stay on track with your assignments.  

 Positive students and masking

Students who test positive should wear a mask at all times when not alone. For students isolating in place, this includes roommates. All students who test positive for COVID-19 should wear a well-fitting mask for five days after ending isolation. 

Campus dining for campus residents in isolation

Students who are unable to return home for isolation must complete the online meal form available at the bottom of the student tab in myRedDragon. COVID-positive students must wear a well-fitting mask and pick up their meals from the Bistro Off Broadway during designated times. They may also send a friend to pick up to-go meals for them.   

  • Lunch meals will be provided with labels (noting initials and last four digits of C-number) at noon Monday through Friday outside Bistro. 
  • Dinner will be provided at 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Breakfast items for the next day will be included with dinner. 
  • Weekend packages will be given with dinner on Friday if a student is still in isolation over the weekend. If a student enters isolation over the weekend, Cortland Auxiliary Services will prepare a weekend package to be picked up outside Bistro once Cortland Auxiliary Services is contacted. 

Internships and student teaching

Students who are working as student teachers or interns, including those in on- and off-campus placements, are expected to comply with vaccination and safety guidance established by those placements.

Additional notes

  • Student teachers or students in full-time internships/field experiences who choose not to comply with their placement's vaccination policies and/or safety policies will not be given new placements and will need to withdraw from their student teaching/internship courses for the semester.

Information for employees


What to do if you are symptomatic

All employees should be aware of possible COVID-19 symptoms, including fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting or diarrhea.

If you have symptoms, please take a rapid antigen test or schedule an appointment at a site near you using the State Department of Health’s online portal.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have published helpful information for people who are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.

If you are sick, please stay home and notify your supervisor.

What to do if you are in isolation or quarantine

If an employee has tested positive, you must isolate for a minimum of five days and notify your supervisor. You must also wear a well-fitting face covering for at least five days after the date of the positive test. 

Eligibility for returning to campus following a positive test

If an employee tests positive, regardless of vaccination status: 

  • Isolate for a minimum of five days. Day 0 is the day of symptoms or, if asymptomatic, the date of the first positive test, AND 
  • If symptomatic, stay in isolation until symptoms are improving and you are fever-free for 24 hours without fever-reducing medication. 
  • Wear a well-fitting mask for five days upon return. 

Eligibility for returning to campus following a direct exposure

If employees are directly exposed to COVID-19, regardless of vaccination status:
  • Employees may continue to report to work on campus
  • It is highly recommended employees monitor symptoms and get tested within five days
  • Employees should wear a well-fitting mask for five days after exposure

Work during isolation or quarantine

  • During any periods of isolation or quarantine under these standards, remote work will be endorsed, subject to approval of supervisors and the nature of the work performed by the employee.

The university will continue to monitor the local situation, adjust standards accordingly and communicate policy changes through campus email.

Questions

COVID questions form

If you have questions that are not addressed in the guidance above, please submit them through the COVID Questions form.

Employees are encouraged to contact their supervisors with immediate questions.




Restart News

An update on SUNY’s COVID-19 vaccine policy

April 13, 2023
SUNY will no longer require a COVID-19 vaccine beginning with Summer Session I 2023.

A note about SUNY Cortland’s COVID-19 data

Sept. 19, 2022
A university-specific tracker will begin on Sept. 23.

Reporting a positive COVID-19 test

Sept. 19, 2022
Students should self-report test results through myRedDragon.