Nicholas Bogel-Burroughs / Sun File Photo

The Cornell IT department, alongside other on-campus services, has ramped up its online support for students now taking virtual classes.

April 9, 2020

Cornell Services Expand Online Resources for Students

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Navigable web-based resources have become vital as Cornell has moved online. Across the University, libraries, the health center and advising offices are working to provide access to all necessary services.

The Learning Strategies Center continues to provide peer tutoring, supplemental coursework and drop-in hours remotely. Its website recently added various articles and videos pertaining to online learning, including a checklist for learning during COVID-19.

Jennifer Cara Bokaer-Smith, senior associate director of the LSC, advised students to focus on time management, adaptability and empathy with peers during this time. She also encouraged students to reach out if they need any sort of assistance with coursework, or even emotional support.

“This isn’t learning online,” Bokaer-Smith said. “This is learning online during COVID.”

Career Services is also open to students, with advisors available for Zoom meetings weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. EST. Students can seek help with summer plans, resumes, networking or anything pertaining to their careers — especially as summer plans and internships shift.

Career development offices for specific colleges are working to address the circumstances. The College of Arts and Sciences Career Development office plans to post a new page on its website soon.

Jen McLaughlin, assistant dean and director of the Arts Career Development, explained that the office wants more information from the outside world before they post this comprehensive page. Along with career-specific search sites, the website will include updates on major employers.

“A lot of our employer partners are telling us that they are or were going to be making a decision on their internship programs and full time job offerings around April 15,” McLaughlin said.

Students can also continue to access the online catalog for Cornell libraries, and librarians will provide research consultations over Zoom. A COVID-19 related library webpage details all updated library resources, including instructions to access some of Cornell’s print collection through HathiTrust Digital Library.

Cornell Information Technology Services posted information on programs, technology and remote learning on its website — including a page on remote learning tools and tips on accessing necessary technology and Wi-Fi.

Health and wellbeing services on campus are also virtual: Cornell Health remains open weekdays from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm EST for in-person urgent care, and now offers remote mental health services. Although all Cornell fitness centers are closed, Cornell Recreational Services made some fitness classes virtual.

The Access Fund, which provides up to $500 to community members in need of support, will accept applications until May 8 to aid with technology access and travel.

The Cornell Food Pantry remains open with limited hours for food-insecure individuals, and recently partnered with Greater Ithaca Activities Center and Food Bank of the Southern Tier. to open a downtown food pantry

Recognizing the extraordinary circumstances, administrators encouraged students to seek help and to try to help each other.

“My words for students would be reach out, ask questions, ask for accommodations,” McLaughlin said.

“We want all students to think about each other and that everybody’s going through this experience differently,” Bokaer-Smith continued. That’s something that I think is very, really important, that we have compassion and empathy.”