The Cornell Quaranzine

Supporting Your Well-being - Fall 2020


Dear Community,

We've officially made it to the last week of October. Can you believe it? In the past, this time of the year was typically marked with Halloween festivities, and indulging in all things pumpkin spice to help cope with the second half of the semester. But this year, so much more is on our hearts and minds. The 2020 Election, the COVID-19 pandemic, the California and Colorado wildfires, Typhoon Molave in the Phillipines and Vietnam, and the international injustices in African counties including, but not limited to, Nigeria, Congo, and Cameroon, are just scratching the surface of major concerns affecting many in our Cornell community. It's easy to feel overwhelmed, discouraged, and alone. But now more than ever, our Cornell Community must continue to care and cope- together.

Wishing you wellness,

The Skorton Center for Health Initiatives at Cornell Health

* If you would like to continue receiving issues of the newsletter each week, follow this link!

But First: A Self Check-in

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Wait... what does Gandalf have to do with our self check in? Actually, more than you'd think.

cope: (v) to deal effectively with something difficult

The word cope originates from to the Anglo-French word couper meaning "to strike." The undertone of this word implies a readiness for a battle against the difficulties of life. Some of which include fear, anxiety, stress, pain, and uncertainty. Sound like anything you're dealing with this year?

The encouraging part is that we, like Gandalf, don't have to strike alone. We have access to resources right here in our Cornell Community. What resources do we mean?

  • People: our friends, family, professors, mentors and classmates who can help us deal effectively with our emotional and academic sources of stress
  • Places: where we can go to get the professional, medical, and social support we need, such as Cornell Health, the Tatkon Center, LGBT Resource Center, Women's Resource Center, Asian and Asian American Resource Center, Office of Spirituality and Meaning Making, and the list goes on.
  • Practices: What activities do you do to take care of yourself physically, mentally, spiritually, and emotionally? How do you connect meaningfully with yourself and those around you? What are ways you practice mindfulness, get active, and take a break to just have fun?

"Now, more than ever, the illusions of division threaten our very existence. We all know the truth: more connects us than separates us. But in times of crisis the wise build bridges, while the foolish build barriers. We must find a way to look after one another..." - from Black Panther

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Halloween 2020

It's true - you can still celebrate Halloween while keeping yourself and the community safe!

  1. Protect yourself and your friends by wearing a mask under- or as part of- your costume
  2. Indoor gatherings pose an increased risk for COVID-19 spread. Limit your time indoors, avoid crowds, wear a face covering, and don't share food or drinks.
  3. Traditional Halloween activities carry additional risk for COVID-19 spread. If gathering with friends, consider decorating pumpkins outdoors, apple picking, stargazing, or joining a virtual costume contest (avoiding cultural appropriation of course!)
  4. Stay in Ithaca. We're fortunate to live in our "bubble" with such low positivity rates (0.1% for Tompkins County) and we'd hate to see it burst by bringing in the virus from other places.

Get More Rest to Cope Your Best

One practice we can all benefit from is improving our sleep. Enroll in Refresh, Cornell Health’s online sleep program, for evidence-based information and strategies proven to help you catch more high-quality ZZZs. Refresh is an eight-week self-help program open to undergraduate, graduate, and professional students. Enroll in Refresh by Wednesday, October 28 to participate in the program beginning November 1.

Express Yourself

Provide feedback on Cornell’s Mental Health Review

All members of the campus community are invited to provide feedback on recommendations outlined in the Final Report (pdf) from Cornell’s year-long Mental Health Review. Community members can help prioritize recommendations as well as enter feedback to inform changes made to the academic and social environments and clinical services at Cornell. The feedback form is available until midnight on Sunday, Nov. 8.

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Chimes Halloween Concert

Saturday, Oct. 31st, 6:30pm

McGraw Tower, Ithaca, NY 14850, USA

Cornell Chimesmasters are hosting two (2) Halloween concerts

  • 6:30PM-7:00PM
  • 10:00PM-10:30PM

Join them from your favorite outdoor listening spot, maybe in costume? and enjoy spooky music under the orange glow of the pumpkin clock faces.


Coping together during difficult times:

Members of the Ithaca community and Cornell students touched by the events in Nigeria found a place to convene, grieve, and show solidarity this past weekend. Click the link below for to read the full article.

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Resources for (Coping) & Connecting

Elect and Reflect: Special Let's Meditate (Virtual) Spaces November 3rd & 4th

Please join Dean of Students staff, Cornell United Religious Work Chaplains and Let's Meditate guides for a unique set of support spaces entitled - Elect and Reflect: Meditation and Reflection for Election 2020 . Each 15 minute session will include a warm welcome, short reflection and a 10 minute guided mindfulness meditation to help with processing thoughts and emotions related to the election and to offer moments of comfort and hope for the future. See the schedule here: .

All Cornell community members welcome and can join the Zoom Space here, scroll down page:

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Connecting for Emotional Support: Coping With Election Week- Wellness Special Workshops

Monday, Nov 2 at 3 pm: Meditation for Mental and Physical Relaxation
Join Ruth Merle-Doyle for a 30 minute guided meditation to ease the tension of the mind and body. All levels of experience welcome, especially beginner or anyone who feels stressed to their limits.

Tuesday, Nov 3 at 9 am: Meditation for Riding Out the Storm
Join this meditation, provided by Kerry Howell, on election day, to claim a few moments of self-care to re-ground yourself and find a sense of peace and calm in the eye of a storm.

Wednesday, Nov 4 at noon: De-Stress Desk Stretches
Join Jeremy Stewart from Cornell Wellness for an interactive zoom workshop where you will have the opportunity to relax some muscle groups and body areas that get cranky when we start to feel stressed. Take 30-minutes out of your day to move and release build up tension through a series stretches shown to help relax the mind and body.

Thursday, Nov 5 at noon: Meditation for Acceptance
No matter your political affiliation, who won or lost, if you voted independent or with a primary party, here we are now. Right now, right here. Join Keri Johnson, Wellness & Fitness Specialist, to help bring you back to homeostasis. During this session, we will find our individual, new centers of existence, while internally identifying what we can control, and what we cannot. From there we will explore ways to alter, adapt, and accept these new times ahead.

Friday, Nov 6 at 1 pm: Compassion Meditation
Join Ruth Merle-Doyle for a 30-minute compassion meditation. We will use our time to focus on breath and softening of the body, mind and spirit while we use compassionate mantra to wish ourselves and others freedom from distress and anxiety. All levels of experience welcome, especially beginner or anyone who feels stressed to their limits.

Fill out the Qualtrics link to register :(

Connecting for Academic Support

The Learning Strategies Center (LSC) wants to help you ace your exams!

It's the second half of the semester, so there's still time to change your grades for the better! What are some strategies that Cornell students have found to be effective as they study for and take exams?

The Learning Strategies Center (LSC) has resources to help you:

  • identify effective (and ineffective) study strategies,
  • develop a study plan to prepare for exams,
  • consider strategies for taking different types of exams (online, open book, in-person), and
  • identify strategies for tackling different types of exam questions (multiple choice, quantitative, and essay).

Self-enroll in our LSC Study Skills Canvas site for complete access to all resources or take a look at our webpages on studying for and taking exams.

Plus, check out this video from the University about how to Study Smarter!

Cornell Food Pantry is Open

Located at 109 McGraw Place, the Cornell Food Pantry is just off University Avenue, across from Alice Cook House on West Campus. Free, confidential access to food and personal care items is available to Cornell undergraduate and graduate students, as well as Cornell staff and faculty.
The Cornell Food Pantry is open Tuesdays and Thursdays 4-7pm, Wednesdays and Fridays 10am-1pm, and Sundays 12-3pm. Enroll to participate: Visit to enroll in the Food Pantry program. Make a gift in direct support of the Cornell Food Pantry. Contact Info:

Often Forgotten COVID-19 Precautions

We're excited to highlight the work of one of our COVID-19 Peer Consultants, Bianca Santos-Declet. Check out Bianca's Covid-19 reminders! And thank you to all our Peer Consultants for all their great work this semester.

Talk/Text Resources

If you find yourself struggling or in need of someone to talk to, know that you are not alone.

The following resources are here to support you:

Cornell Resources

  • Cornell Health phone consultation (24/7): 607-255-5155

  • EARS peer counselors phone consultation 3-11pm M-F; 7-11pm S/S: 607-255-3277

Ithaca Resources (24/7)

National Talk-Lines (24/7)

  • Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 800-273-8255

  • Trevor Project hotline (LGBTQ+): 866-488-7386

  • LGBT+ National Hotline: 888-843-4564

  • TransLifeline: 877-565-8860

National Text/Chat Services

  • National Crisis Text Line: Text HELLO to 741741

  • Steve Fund crisis text line: Text STEVE to 741741 (connects you to a counselor of color)

  • Trevor Project text line (LGBTQ+): Text START to 678678

National Suicide Prevention "Lifeline CHAT" service:

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