Supporting Your Well-being

During Times of Difficulty — April 28th, 2020 Edition

Dear community,

Believe it or not, there are only two weeks of classes remaining! Congratulations to all of you — students, faculty, staff, and family — for persevering in the face of what has proven to be one of the most challenging and unprecedented semesters we have experienced. For those of you who are students, as the school year approaches an end, you may find yourself with lingering questions surrounding the many academic changes that have taken place this semester. Please see Cornell's page of information for students to address any questions or concerns you may have as you finish your semester.

On another note, even though we are all currently in a state of necessary physical distancing, it is important to recall the importance of social connection. This newsletter will feature a video on physical distancing for risk reduction as well as a number of online resources, events, and ideas to help you strengthen connections with others and have fun!

Wishing you wellness,

The Skorton Center for Health Initiatives at Cornell Health

Cornell: Stop COVID - Physical Distancing

Cornell: Stop COVID – Physical Distancing

One thing we learned from our Cornell Health COVID-19 Survey that ran earlier this month is that the vast majority of students were interested in receiving more information about COVID-19 risk reduction. In response, Skorton Center staff developed a series of short videos that highlight simple risk reduction measures to protect yourself and your loved ones, no matter where you currently reside. View our second video above to learn about physical distancing to protect yourself, your friends, and your family! If you missed our first video on the importance of wearing a mask, see it here!

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StoryCorps Connect

Looking to connect more with your loved ones during this time? Developed in March 2020 in response to the current pandemic, StoryCorps Connect is a first-of-its kind platform that enables you to record a StoryCorps interview with a loved one remotely using video conference technology. The audio and a still photo from each interview is archived at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress. Your interview becomes part of American history, and hundreds of years from now, future generations can listen in!

Learn more about StoryCorps Connect here!

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Rec Without Borders: Quarantine Quiz Show

Do you enjoy a healthy dose of friendly competition and the opportunity to win awesome swag from schools across the U.S.? Cornell Rec Services is hosting a Quarantine Quiz Show every Wednesday night at 8pm EST that's bringing together students, alumni, faculty, and staff from all over the country to connect over a game of trivia! Join in the fun by scanning the QR code above to join on Twitch!

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Connect with Friends Virtually

While chatting with friends on Zoom can be a great way to connect, you may be looking for ways to add a little something extra to your conversations. Here are some options to amp up your Zoom sessions and replicate some of the activities you used to enjoy together in person:

  • Movie night: Enjoy a movie, TV show, or even just funny YouTube videos together by using one of the many online tools such as Netflix Party that allow multiple users to stream media at the same time while chatting!
  • Games night: Have some fun by playing an online multiplayer game, like Jackbox or Words with Friends. There are tons to choose from! Alternatively, use Zoom's built-in share screen function to pull up a "whiteboard" where you and your friends can play Pictionary, hangman, and more!
  • DIY TED Talks: Everyone creates a short presentation or PowerPoint on any topic of their choosing and then shares with the group! This can be a great way to share your passions and interests with each other, spark discussion, or just have a lot of laughs.
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Virtual NYC Attractions

While New York City is continuing to work on beating this pandemic, your virtual support of many of its attractions can not only be a mood booster for you but a support for the city as well. Thanks to NYCgo's collection, you can enjoy the best New York City has to offer right on your computer. They've created an archive of online resources and virtual experiences from museums, galleries, comedy clubs, theaters and more for you to enjoy while staying safe and doing your part to continue to reduce the spread of COVID-19!

Bright Spot:

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A Symbol of Love in the Heart of the City

Bryant Park recently unveiled a heart mowed into its Midtown Manhattan lawn. According to Dan Biederman, Bryant Park Corporation Executive Director, “It’s a message of love to all New Yorkers, especially essential workers, who are weathering the pandemic crisis in a heroic way.”

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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

Ithaca Resources (24/7)

  • Ithaca Crisisline: 800-273-8255

  • Advocacy Center (sexual/domestic violence): 607-277-5000

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 crisis counselor of color)

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

  • National Suicide Prevention "Lifeline CHAT" service:

Get in Touch

  • Contact Catherine Thrasher-Carroll, Mental Health Promotion Program Director, at

  • Contact Amber Pasha, Public Health Fellow, at

  • All Cornell students, regardless of location, can access medical and mental health services through FREE telehealth appointments with Cornell Health (appointments may be offered by video, phone, or online, depending on your location and need). Our in-person services are currently limited to pre-screened COVID-19 testing and select pharmacy services. As always, please refer to the Cornell Health website for the most up-to-date information regarding our services.