Working on Campus

All employees, working on the Cornell campus, even if only occasionally, are required to adhere to all CDC, NYS, local health department, and Cornell University orders, guidelines, policies and procedures at all times. Failure to adhere to all required orders, guidelines, policies and procedures may lead to disciplinary action, and/or loss of privileges, including access to campus buildings and resources.

Return to Campus

Before you can return to campus, you must must log into the Daily Check and request to change your testing frequency to be enrolled in the Daily Check and surveillance testing. 

Visit Daily Check

Daily Check

REQUIRED: Complete the Daily Check each day before arriving on campus or accessing campus facilities.

Complete your Daily Check

Surveillence Testing

REQUIRED: If you work or teach on campus, you are required to participate in Cornell’s surveillance testing program. 

More about Testing



Compliance with both the daily check assessment and the surveillance testing program requirements are key to helping Cornell preserve the health and safety of our campus and Ithaca communities.

Failure to comply and fully participate may lead to discipline and/or loss of privileges.

Personal Health Practices

All employees returning to campus must adhere to the university’s Employee Health Protection- Procedures and complete EHS Return To Work Health and Safety Training for COVID-19.

Personal Activities

All employees are strongly advised to follow CDC and health department guidance outside of work to minimize the potential spread of COVID-19 to themselves, their coworkers and others.

Teaching Responsibilities

Wherever possible, individuals with responsibility for creating and teaching courses may determine whether the course will be conducted in person or online during the fall semester.

Hourly Student Employment

Contact the Student Employment Office with questions pertaining to hourly student employment.


Workplace Exposure

Assessment Faculty and staff who are seeking a workplace evaluation due to potential risks related to their job should contact

N95 Voluntary Use Program

Employees who do not meet the requirements for a medical accommodation and/or don’t have any workplace exposure that warrants wearing of a N95 respirator may participate in the EHS voluntary use program after completing the required training. Participation requires the employee to provide their own N95 respirator. Contact for more information.

See also:

University Operations

On-Campus Considerations

All employees returning to campus, including those who were previously approved to be on campus, must follow all federal, state and local orders and directives as well as the policies and protocols detailed in this guide for working on campus.

As on-campus presence increases and operations expand, Cornell leadership and public health officials will closely monitor and assess the potential spread of the virus, as well as adjust existing policies and procedures to mitigate risk of infection. If localized outbreaks occur, the university may need to implement tighter restrictions and reduced on-site staffing.

Cloth Face Coverings/Masks and Social Distancing

All individuals will be required to adhere to the university’s guidelines on use of cloth face coverings/masks and social distancing. Information about the university’s expectations can be found at

Arrival / Departure Control

Departments and building coordinators should identify usable building access points and coordinate arrival and departure times, as well as meal and break periods, of staff to reduce congestion during typical “rush hours” of the business day. Appropriately, staggering arrival and departures, and meal and break periods, will reduce personal interactions at building access points, hallways, stairs/elevators, kitchens, break rooms, etc. In the event a unit needs to adjust schedules, meal or break periods for employees represented by a union, please consult with Workforce Policy and Labor Relations prior to implementation.

Support Services

The university will provide all support services necessary to advance its core mission. The delivery of such services may be different as many employees will continue to work remotely, and the university will utilize a variety of technologies to deliver needed services. If on-site presence is required to deliver needed services, appropriate arrangements will be made.

Example of Physical Distancing poster

Example of Lab Courtesy poster

Cornell Healthy Campus Signs

As buildings come back online, it is important that adequate and consistent signage is in place to ensure employees are aware of the health requirements associated with working and researching on-campus.

Signage is available to print.

If existing signage does not meet your unit’s specific needs, please contact who can work with you to develop a suitable sign.


In-person, university-sponsored events and activities of 10 people or fewer are now permitted (face masks and physical distancing are required). This applies to business activities sponsored by a college, department, unit or lab – whether on or off campus.

  • Anyone attending an on-campus meeting or activity must be approved to be on campus.
  • Faculty and staff approved to be on campus must complete the Daily Check each day they plan to go to campus, and complete surveillance testing on their assigned testing frequency and day. In order to continue to manage the density of campus and protect the health and safety of our community, employees who can fully perform their work responsibilities remotely, and who are not currently approved to be on campus, should not be approved to be on campus solely for the purposes of attending an event or activity.
  • Visitors are prohibited from entering campus facilities.


At this time, the university is limiting visitor access to campus buildings. Visitors may only access Cornell buildings with advanced permission and is required to strictly adhere to all health and safety precautions, including use of cloth face coverings/masks and social distancing.


Only retirees who have received specific approval may access Cornell buildings at this time. As with all people on campus, retirees will be expected to follow all health and safety guidance issued by federal, state and local authorities as well as Cornell specific guidance.


At this time, volunteers should not be utilized on campus unless specifically addressed in an approved reactivation plan.

See also: