EDITORIAL | Cornell, Your Community Deserves a Better Vaccination Plan

As New York State’s vaccination program ramps up, many Cornellians are now eligible to receive their first dose under the criteria for Phase 1B. However, despite their eligibility, many students are facing obstacles in traveling to vaccination sites in Syracuse and Binghamton. 

If Cornell truly wants to encourage health and safety, it needs a better plan to help its community receive vaccinations. Now, as dining workers, residential advisers and in-person instructors are eligible, the University should assist at-risk individuals by offering scheduling, transportation and informational assistance. 

“I felt completely alone in trying to arrange my appointment to begin with,” said Selin Cebel ’21, a student manager at Green Dragon Café. “Being an international student, I didn’t know how to find my way in scheduling this sort of thing.”

Cebel, who traveled to Syracuse for the vaccination last week, had to rent a car in order to receive her first dose. “Taking a public bus right now isn’t the best thing to do, especially when you’re going to get the vaccine, and so I had to rent a car from Central Ithaca,” she added.

EDITORIAL | Safe Socializing for Mental Health

Now that campus has returned to alert level green, it might be tempting to forget what moved Cornell to yellow in the first place. In a Feb. 5 email, President Martha Pollack attributed the pre-semester spike to a Collegetown party where several members of Greek life organizations were reportedly present and not following COVID-19 protocols. The actions of these students not only violated the behavioral compact, but were also incredibly selfish. However, Greek life represents a microcosm, albeit a rather extreme one, of how the entire student body feels.

EDITORIAL | Let the First COVID-19 Cluster Be a Wakeup Call

Last March, when  Cornell shut its doors, students and faculty alike were scared and confused as to what the next few months would bring. Our future at Cornell was uncertain. Students fled from their dorms and houses, final goodbyes were rushed and every student body and faculty member gained a uniquely traumatic experience that will stay with them. No one knew quite how serious the coronavirus pandemic would get. Nearly six months later, the U.S. exceeds 6 million COVID-19 cases.

EDITORIAL: Administrators Took a Shaky First Step. Walk the Walk, Cornell.

The University’s decision to suspend classes and accelerate the timeline for Ithaca departure is jarring. In the few days since President Martha Pollack’s Tuesday announcement, many students booked travel based on the presumed knowledge that they would not be ushered off campus until March 28. Professors have worked with students assuming that they had some in-person communication to make the transition to online learning as smooth as possible. Now, students have been forced to amend their travel plans again. Entire course syllabi have been destroyed and the academic merit of the current Cornell semester has been called into question.