Letter to the Editor

Letter to the Editor: RE: ‘Despite Risk of Over a Thousand Infections, Pollack Reiterates That Reopening is the ‘Best’ Path’

To the Editor:

In a recent article you provide a quotation from President Martha E. Pollack describing what she expects will happen this coming semester: “‘We anticipate finding many hundreds, and probably more than a thousand, of coronavirus cases in the Cornell community over the coming semester,’ Pollack wrote.”

According to the Tompkins County Department of Health, since the pandemic began, our county has had 228 people test positive for the virus and two deaths from the virus. Those two deaths were of non-residents who had been transferred to Tompkins County from the overloaded medical system of the metro-New York City area during the worst of the outbreak there. 228 cases in five and a half months. Now, Pres. Pollack expects more than 1000 infections in a little over three months? Does Pres. Pollack’s predicted 1000 infections “in the Cornell community” mean only among students, faculty and staff of Cornell?

The rules and expectations for going back to school are long and detailed. Here, we answered as many questions as we can. Have more? Ask them here, too.

Your Cornell Back-to-School Questions, Answered.

The Sun staff responds to readers’ questions on moving in, campus life and costs of the upcoming semester.


Quote Block Templates (47)

SMITH | Getting Cold Feet

Whenever being home was getting to me or quarantine seemed like it would never end, I would comfort myself with a vision of the little studio apartment I’d saved up to lease in Ithaca. There would be houseplants galore, I could once again see my friends and I would be more mentally challenged than I am currently by my three-month free trial of Skillshare. Enter Pres. Martha Pollack’s email, announcing the hybrid, altered semester and the start of classes on September 2nd. That email was the answer to a lot of my prayers, though there are the obvious limitations as a result from COVID-19. Yet, ever since it arrived in my inbox there’s been a sense of anxiety I can’t kick.

Incoming students move into North Campus dorms in August 2019. While many Cornellians expressed excitement over the end of "Zoom University," others feel a semester of social distancing regulations and campus restrictions just isn't worth it.

Are Students Excited to Return to Campus This Fall? It Depends Who You Ask

President Martha E. Pollack’s long-awaited Tuesday announcement welcomed Cornellians back to campus, but described a Cornell that faintly resembles the one students left in March. Many say they are still thrilled to return to Ithaca in September, while others were skeptical of the reopening message, wary of what social distancing will mean in an environment built for socializing.

Cornell students will return to campus for the fall semester, President Martha Pollack announced on Tuesday.

Martha Pollack’s Email On Fall Semester Plans, Annotated

Cornellians will come back to Ithaca for the fall 2020 semester, President Martha E. Pollack announced on Tuesday. Students will return home at Thanksgiving and finish the semester online, while the spring semester is scheduled to begin in February. Here’s Pollack’s email, annotated with background information and additional details: