SUNY Cortland President Shares Information on Spring Semester

SUNY Cortland President Erik J. Bitterbaum. (Photo from

This week, SUNY Cortland President Erik J. Bitterbaum sent the following message to students regarding this upcoming Spring semester:

Dear students,

I want to thank you for your patience as SUNY System Administration finalizes its review of our plans for the spring semester. I understand that you and your families have many questions. The university has been working with SUNY and the Cortland County Health Department to develop a comprehensive approach because the health and safety of our community requires a collective effort.

I can share the following updates:

  • All spring semester classes, both in-person and online, will begin on Monday, Feb. 1, as previously outlined in the revised 2020-21 Academic Calendar.
  • Move-in to campus residence halls is scheduled Jan. 27 to 31, with resident assistants returning Jan. 22 to 24. Campus residents from states outside New York may be required to quarantine upon their arrival. Please refer to the arrival information page from the Residence Life and Housing Office for more details.
  • SUNY Cortland has proposed two non-instructional wellness days for the spring semester on Tuesday, March 9, and Wednesday, April 14, in an effort to avoid fatigue. On these dates, assignments would not be due and classes would not take place in person or online.
  • As a reminder, all students must complete their daily digital screening on myRedDragon every day for 14 days before their arrival, so you should start this process immediately. You also must complete a seven-day precautionary quarantine before coming to campus, be tested for COVID-19 before you return to Cortland and upon your arrival. We will test all students every week during the Spring 2021 semester. Please refer to the Spring 2021 Guide for detailed instructions.

I am especially grateful for the many people on campus who have worked hard to strengthen our COVID-19 testing efforts. I am hopeful that increased testing will help ensure a safe campus community.

At the same time, we must recognize that testing alone will not ensure success. Our habits from the fall semester must remain in place — wearing face coverings, practicing physical distancing and avoiding large gatherings on and off campus. As a reminder, students who violate COVID-19 guidelines risk permanent dismissal, suspension or the loss of access to SUNY Cortland facilities.

Please continue to check your SUNY Cortland email for correspondence from your professors and refer to the Spring 2021 Guide for key information about the spring semester. I will continue to update you with important developments when they are confirmed.


All the best,

Erik J. Bitterbaum