Temporary Injuries and Illnesses

Unexpected injuries and illnesses can happen to anyone at any time. Student Disability Services (SDS) may be able to provide some assistance.

The process to register with SDS can take more than a week. It can also take a few days to put accommodations or services in place. Registering with SDS may not be appropriate for injuries and illnesses only lasting a few days. 

Where to Start

  • Inform your instructors of the impact of your condition, specifically what effect you think it might have on meeting attendance or other class requirements (such as exams and deadlines). Communication is very important. If you send an urgent message by email, be sure to follow up.
  • Speak with your College Advising Office as they may be able to provide information about appropriate resources and assistance. They can also discuss whether taking a reduced courseload, taking incompletes, or a leave of absence may be appropriate options. 
  • Call on your personal network of friends and classmates to help you out with things such as: copies of class notes, personal assistance, transportation to classes/appointments, and getting meals.
  • Ask dining staff for assistance if you need help using the dining hall or getting meals. You can email dining@cornell.edu if you need to arrange a "sick tray" (to-go meal) or boxed meal, or have questions about getting assistance. Residential staff can often help with getting to-go meals as well. Please review information on the Cornell Dining website about sick trays and boxed meals. 

Be mindful that certain practices and procedures may look different during the pandemic.

When to Register with SDS

Consider registering with SDS if you have a condition that will last more than a few days and:

  • your instructors need guidance from SDS on academic accommodations
  • you have classes or programs in classrooms that you cannot get to due to an injury
  • you want to discuss transportation options
  • you need to use a laptop for typing during exams
  • your condition is preventing you from participating in your classes or program (e.g., you are unable to take your own notes, you are no longer able to engage in PE, etc.)

Note: SDS has a registration process before accommodations can be provided and may need supporting documentation from your health care provider. We are not able to provide immediate accommodations. 

Please be aware that we cannot assist with things like: typing homework assignments, personal assistance (e.g., laundry), or transportation to off-campus medical appointments.