This week, SUNY Cortland President Erik J. Bitterbaum sent the following message to students about the college's commitment to COVID-19 safety:
Last week marked an important first step in the semester, but we must continue to work even harder to keep COVID-19 in check. Although the majority of you followed campus safety protocols and reported for weekly pool testing, our rising case numbers suggest that we must be even more vigilant and conscientious. We all have a responsibility to avoid behavior that puts many campus experiences at risk and, more importantly, threatens the health of our community.
Remember that all students who come to campus for any reason are required to report for campus pool testing each week, whether they are living on campus or off-campus in Cortland, even if all of their classes are online. Regular testing is our most valuable tool to help ensure everyone’s safety. Ultimately, your participation will determine the university’s ability to offer important campus experiences, including access to the Student Life Center, in-person dining and athletics practices.
Please note the following reminders about pool testing:
Everyone in Cortland must participate: Even if you are living off campus in Cortland and taking a fully online schedule, you must test weekly. The only exceptions are students in quarantine or isolation and students who have tested positive in the past 90 days and submitted documentation.
The process is fast and easy: Register online using the COVID-19 tab in myRedDragon and follow the instructions sent to your email. When you go to the Student Life Center, multiple lines will be open and the entire process will take only a few minutes.
Positive tests will not lead to punishment: There are no disciplinary actions tied to testing positive for COVID-19, but you will be required to follow all quarantine and isolation protocols for the well-being of the campus community.
Let me be clear: we must improve our efforts. Please wear a face covering, especially if you are with others outside of your residence. Avoid large gatherings. Practice safe behaviors and commit to pool testing for the sake of SUNY Cortland as a whole. I hope you will work hard to remind your friends and classmates to do the same.
All the best,
Erik J. Bitterbaum