Ways to support your student during the COVID-19 pandemic
Like many of us, students are experiencing a myriad of emotions at this time: confusion, anxiety, grief, and worry for the future.
Students who have left campus face unique stressors and challenges, including the loss of academic and social communities, and disappointment about having to abruptly upend their lives and move home. On top of that, students may have health and safety concerns for themselves, family members, or friends, and may be worried about their financial situations.
If your student is struggling, remind them that they are not alone. Please refer to the resources below for ways you can help support them through this unprecedented time.
COVID-19 consultation & prevention
Phone consultation and testing
Wherever your student currently resides, they can consult with a medical provider through Cornell Health if they have questions or concerns related to COVID-19 symptoms or exposure. Students everywhere can call us 24/7 for guidance: 607-255-5155 (#1). For students in Ithaca, COVID-19 testing is available at Cornell Health. Other students can receive guidance about whether to seek testing or care in their area.
>> TIP FOR PARENTS: Some students may need gentle reminders and encouragement to keep practicing important prevention strategies including physical distancing, frequent hand-washing, and wearing a mask. Share these prevention videos with them, and these survey results showing how their peers are practicing prevention.
Medical / mental health services & support
Telehealth services available with no copay
Students can now access many medical and mental health services through telehealth visits with Cornell Health. Some visits are being conducted by secure video visit; others by phone or secure messaging, depending on your student’s need and location. All telehealth appointments are scheduled by phone and have no copay. Learn more about our Telehealth Services.
>> TIP FOR PARENTS: The care we provide to your student is confidential, in accordance with state and federal law and professional standards. Encourage your student to find a private location where they can speak confidentially with their health care provider without being overheard or disturbed. Learn more about our Confidentiality and Patient Rights.
24/7 phone consultation
Resources for support
Our Coping During COVID-19 webpage provides excellent resources for self-care and connection.
We also recommend the following articles:
- Parents of College Students Share COVID-19 Questions and Advice, Collegiate Parent
- Help Your Student Succeed at Remote Learning, Collegiate Parent
- Productivity and Happiness Under Sustained Disaster Conditions, The Chronicle of Higher Education
>> TIP FOR PARENTS: Remind your student that this pandemic is impacting each of us in different ways, and whatever they are feeling or experiencing is an appropriate response. Encourage them to do these six things every day while practicing physical distancing – (1) Stick to a routine; (2) shower and dress; (3) get out of the house; (4) get some exercise; (5) limit social media & news consumption; (6) connect with others online & by phone – and to reach out for support if they need it.
>> TIP FOR PARENTS: "Resist the urge to minimize or dismiss (your child's) worry, anger and sadness. They have every right to feelings of isolation and having to regress to their childhood bedrooms and routines. Separate your feelings from theirs. You may have to grieve your own disappointment at not seeing them accept their diploma and manage your anxiety about seeing them struggle." (From The Kids May Not Be All Right. And That's OK, by Ellen H. O'Donnell)
Support for students with disabilities / chronic health concerns
This is a challenging time for our whole community, but concerns may be heightened for those with significant health issues or disabilities. Some students may also have new or evolving needs for accommodations related to remote learning.
Our Student Disability Services staff are continuing to meet with students by phone, Zoom, or Skype. Visit SDS' COVID-19 page for information about disability accommodations and services during this time.
Cornell's Learning Strategies Center offers academic support resources specifically for COVID-19 remote learning. Encourage your student to refer to these helpful resources if needed, and to schedule a consultation with LSC staff if they could benefit from personal assistance.