COVID-19 Policies and Updates

Students walking on Dryden Campus

Spring 2021 COVID Plans

Tompkins Cortland Spring 2021 Information for Students
Tompkins Cortland Spring 2021 Opening Plan for Students and Staff
Tompkins Cortland Spring 2021 SUNY Opening Plan

Most Recent COVID Updates

Classes virtual until Feb. 1

While the Spring 2021 semester begins Jan. 27, in accordance with SUNY guidelines, online, hybrid, and even in-person classes will meet virtually until Feb. 1.

Move-in dates

Students coming from New York state must pre-register for move-in on one of the following days:

Jan. 24 - 27
Jan. 31 - Feb. 3

Students moving to campus from other states should email or call 607.844.6589 to make arrival arrangements.

COVID testing

COVID tests will be in student's rooms when they arrive. Students must take the test and register with Cayuga Health System within 24 hours of arrival on campus to pick up the sample, which students will return to the campus health center or a drop box in Tioga Hall. 

Room assignments and check in

Room assignments will be shared via email beginning Jan. 19. Students who are new to campus or who are switching rooms for the spring should plan to move in on a weekday between 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. If you’re able to do so, go directly to the Office of Residence Life in Tioga Hall to check in.

Evening or weekend arrival

Students arriving in the evening or on the weekend can call the RA on Duty at 607.280.0640 when they arrive to campus for help with check in. Please note that due to limited staffing, students may experience a wait time when checking in during the evening or weekend.

Positive tests

Residential students
Residential students who test positive at any point in the semester will be mandated to move to a designated isolation room. The Tompkins County Health Department will work directly with the Vice President of Student Services and the Residence Life staff on contact tracing. Residence Life is developing a detailed plan for residential students who test positive and students who are exposed.

Commuter students
Commuter students who test positive at any point in the semester will be mandated to stay home in isolation. The Tompkins County Health Department will work directly with the Vice President of Student Services on contact tracing.

Faculty or staff members who test positive will be mandated to stay home in isolation. The Tompkins County Health Department will work directly with Human Resources on contact tracing. Human Resources is working on an updated leave time policy.

COVID 19 Stay Safe Mask

If I have a negative COVID-19 diagnostic test, does that mean I can come out of quarantine?

No. Symptoms of COVID-19 can appear as late as 14 days after exposure. Therefore, a negative test cannot guarantee that you will not become sick. The full 14 days of quarantine are required.


Course Types for Flexibility

The College is offering six course types beginning Aug. 31. Registering students will see the course type in myINFO under the “Registration Info” column.
For more detailed descriptions of each Course Type visit Course Search.

Class instruction is 100% on campus classes/labs.

Class instruction is a blend of on-campus classes/labs and live online class meetings/labs. In person may be optional for some courses.

Class instruction is a blend of on-campus classes/labs and online asynchronous (instruction not occurring at a specified meeting time). In person may be optional for some courses.

Class instruction is 100% live online classes/labs.  

Class instruction is a blend of live online class/labs and online asynchronous (instruction not occurring at a specified meeting time).

Class instruction is 100% online asynchronous (instruction not occurring at a specified meeting time).


Virtual help

The admissions office continues to operate virtual assistance through the Admissions page. The office will open with limited staffing in August and will see students by appointment only.

For information on registering for classes, contact the College at or by calling 607.844.6580.

Student Life/Housing/Support Services


Arrival to Dryden
Students arriving to live in the College’s residence halls will be tested through a partnership with Cayuga Health System. 

Testing for residence students
Students living in residence halls will be tested upon arrival and during the semester at dates yet to be determined. Like all students, they will also be required to complete a daily symptoms check and adhere to regulations.

Housing density
To reduce the density of students living on campus, the number of students in each housing suite in the residence halls will be lowered from a capacity of four to two in each suite.


All buffets and "serve-yourself" stations will be eliminated. Hot and cold food will be available in pre-packaged "grab-n-go" formats. There may also be select buffets that are served by AFV behind glass while students remain 6 feet away with masks. 


The bookstore will operate following social distancing and mask guidelines as set forth by the College. Only a limited number of people will be allowed into the store at one time. For your convenience, you may place your order for textbooks and supplies online and have them shipped to your home. 

Students will not be allowed into the textbook area and store staff will get textbooks for you. This may cause a longer wait time than usual. Students are strongly encouraged to place online orders

You can obtain a list of needed materials online with your student ID number.  Book deferrals were available August 21. In-store pick-up is also available for online orders.

Orders may be placed on the Bookstore's site.


Student support services

The College’s various student support services will be provided face-to-face when possible within the COVID-19 limitations. Services will also continue to be provided remotely. Students should contact the individual office to make appointments.

Academic Records
Academic Records can best be reached at or by phone at 607.844.6500 (fax: 607.844.6550). Student appointments can also be made if needed.

Access and Equity Services
Students with disabilities in need of Access and Equity Services should email or call 607.844.8222, Ext. 4415 if they need to provide documentation of a disability, modify an access plan, or have other questions. Remote appointments will be the standard. In-person appointments will be scheduled when appropriate. 

Tutoring Services will be available online on a drop-in basis and in person by appointment, as well. In-person tutoring will take place in the Baker Commons. To make an appointment, students will email Scott Bennett or call 607.844.8222, Ext. 4416.

International Students/Study Abroad
Services for international students or students interested in studying abroad are available remotely or on campus by appointment. Students can email the Global Initiatives office or call 607.844.8211, Ext. 4522 with questions or to set up an appointment. 

Helping Hands Student Fund
The Helping Hands Fund offers help to students navigating changes due to the pandemic by providing financial support for technology needed for online learning, such as computer tablets, internet connectivity, and specialty software needs – in addition to its traditional assistance with emergency expenses such as unanticipated medical and transportation needs. SUNY has also offered to match donations up to $50,000 - donate here

Current Tompkins Cortland students in need of financial help can apply for assistance by emailing the Vice President of Student Services.

COVID 19 Visitor Information Sign

Child care

The Arthur Kuckes Childcare Center is open at reduced capacity. All guidelines from Reopening New York and the Department of Health will be followed. Contact the center at or by calling 607.844.8222, Ext. 4477 for questions about availability. 


The College has committed to holding outdoor sports in the spring. Coaches and staff are working with student-athletes in preparation for a safe return to competition. Earlier the College postponed most fall athletics competitions to the spring.

Compliance with College regulations

Students who fail to follow our COVID-19 guidelines will be referred to the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards as a failure to comply with the reasonable requests of any College employee violation.

Campus Signage

Any staff member who would like these signs for their campus area(s) can either print from these PDF files or email communications to request additional signs through the print center. 

COVID-19 Resources

For local updates and guidance, visit the Tompkins County Health Department

For additional information about testing and support, visit the Human Services Coalition

For federal updates and resources, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention