ITHACA, N.Y. — Ithaca College announced Friday night that two of its graduate students have tested positive for COVID-19, the first two members of the IC community to test positive since the school was shut down and students were sent home in March.

The Tompkins County Health Department is conducting the contact investigation now, and the two students are in isolation in their residences and are receiving care. According to the school, the health department has determined that there was no exposure “on the Ithaca College campus from these individuals.” Some close contacts have already been tested and have tested negative. The incident is not considered a cluster currently, unlike the outbreak at Cornell and TC3.

IC announced in August that, after initially planning to hold in-person classes in October, the school was converting all of its courses to remote learning. Friday’s announcement was posted on Intercom, the school’s campus message board.

“This situation illustrates the importance of the contact tracing process in our community to control the spread of COVID-19,” said Christina Moylan, Ithaca College’s director of public health emergency preparedness. “We commend our students for their conscientious participation and the work of the public health nurses at the Tompkins County Health Department. We remind all members of the Ithaca College community to be vigilant about adhering to public health recommendations to wear face coverings, maintain six feet of distance, and practice good hand hygiene. Furthermore, if anyone witnesses or experiences an activity or incident involving IC students or employees that raises health and safety concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic, they can use the Community Agreement Reporting Form to notify the college.”

Matt Butler

Matt Butler is the Education & Public Health Reporter at the Ithaca Voice. He can be reached by email at mbutler@ithacavoice.com