Restart: COVID-19 Testing / Arrival / Quarantine Information for Potsdam Graduate Students

Graduate Students: 

We are excited to begin the fall semester. As you may have read, before students come on campus for the Fall semester, they will need to undergo COVID-19 testing with RT-PCR (not serology). This must be scheduled to be performed within 7 calendar days prior to arrival on campus. Students with a positive test prior to arrival will not be allowed to be present on campus in person. The Fall semester begins on August 19th, 2020. Please see the information below that may help you as you plan your arrival.

Pre-Arrival Quarantine Information:

Students who are entering from outside of the U.S. or coming from states listed on the  NYS Travel Advisory List will be required to quarantine 14-days prior to entering campus to begin classes.  

  • If you are expected to quarantine – please complete the following information form and survey to provide information regarding your arrival information and location of quarantine- Student Quarantine Information Form 
    • We are asking all continuing students to complete this form even if you have not departed the North Country Region, you will be able to indicate you have remained in Potsdam.
  • In addition, please note that you will need to complete the DOH Traveler Health Form if you are coming from a state listed on the NYS Travel Advisory List.
    • NOTE _ this is only for travel from a U.S. state on the Travel Advisory List…this is not to record entry for international travel.

Arrival Information:

Graduate students residing with the Potsdam community may arrive any time up to the start of classes. All students will be required to provide a negative test and complete any applicable quarantine in your place of residence. All tests will be loaded to myCU.

Late Arrivals: Due to the semester calendar change, and to best manage safety of all members of the University community, we will work with all students who are unable to arrive by the start of the semester on August 19. This may be due to co-op, internship, travel issues, health issues – etc. These students are expected to complete the Late Arrival form. All late arrivals will be reviewed by the graduate program & International Center on a case-by-case basis.

Items to Bring

All students are asked and reminded to bring a thermometer, hand sanitizer, and multiple masks with them. The University will provide all students with one mask. For students living off-campus, all questions regarding living space, appliances, and other amenities should be discussed with your landlord / apartment complex manager. 

Testing for Residential Programs:

  • St. Lawrence County residents should call and schedule appointments.
    • To schedule your appointment, please call
      • St. Lawrence Health System (various locations) 315-261-6240
      • Claxton-Hepburn Hospital (Ogdensburg) 315-713-6655
      • Clifton Fine Hospital (Clifton Fine) 315-848-8049
  • For those living outside of St. Lawrence County, please consult your medical provider or local Urgent Care for instructions and availability. 
  • Students will need to undergo COVID-19 testing with RT-PCR (not serology). This must be scheduled to be performed within 7 calendar days prior to arrival on campus (e.g. August 10 for August 17 arrival, etc.). 
  • Results from rapid RT-PCR/molecular testing are permitted. Antigen or antibody based tests, including rapid tests, are not acceptable forms of testing. Students should consult their provider prior to testing to confirm the appropriate testing will be administered.
  • Students will submit / upload their negative test results to Student Health Services through myCU before arrival on campus.  
  • Students residing off-campus must have their test and result within 7 days prior to the first day of class (i.e. no earlier than August 12 for August 19 campus arrival) or the first day you will be on campus. Students currently residing and entering campus may test now- prior to the start of the classes.
    • Students who will arrive late to begin class are expected to make arrangements with their program to enroll and participate in their classes. All late arrivals must complete the Late Arrival form for approval. 

Health Sciences

The testing directives in this note do not apply to students enrolled in a Health Science Graduate Program. Given their start dates, separate instructions have already been sent to these programs. 

What if I test positive? 

Students with a positive test prior to arrival will not be allowed to be present on campus in person until given clearance by St. Lawrence County Public Health. Students who need to arrive later than the 19th of August are asked to complete the late arrival form through the Dean of Students. That office will work with you next steps. 

On-going Testing

Through our partnership with St. Lawrence Health System (SLHS) and the MIT-Harvard Broad Institute, we plan to test the student body again after they arrive approximately 7 to 10 days after the specimen from their first test was collected. You will be notified by e-mail once follow-up testing begins, the anticipated start date is 8/17. There is no additional charge for these tests. 

Questions regarding testing may be directed to

Arrival to Clarkson_Potsdam Campus

As a reminder, all students need to complete the arrival form, even if you have not departed the North Country Region. 

Transportation to Campus

Students traveling by air to New York State are required to complete the NYS mandated DOH Traveler Health Form, please note that this is only if you are flying form a U.S. state listed on the NYS Travel Advisory list.  All students traveling to New York State from a restricted state by ground transportation are also required to fill out the DOH Traveler Health Form. At this time, the Trailways bus line has limited services. Trailways will not be servicing any airports in NYS. 

  • Travelers who need to connect with the bus line from an airport will need to take public transportation to the main bus station. For example, students flying into Syracuse, NY would need to take a taxi to 1 Walsh Circle Ste 30, Syracuse, NY 13208 to pick up the bus to Potsdam, NY. 
  • Students taking the Trailways Bus Service are asked to depart at the Constitution / Depot St. stop in Potsdam. Currently, Trailways is not stopping on campus. We have arranged with the village bus service to get students from that stop to campus on the following days:
    • August 1
    • August 16
    • August 17
    • August 18

The Trailways bus arrives at the Constitution / Depot Street stop at 10:20 AM and 9:10 PM. The village bus will pick you up shortly after that time and bring you to campus. The cost of this transportation is free. Please have your student ID ready to be shown when you board the bus. If you are a new student, please explain that you are new and do not have your ID yet. 

Students arriving outside of these dates arriving by Trailways at the Constitution / Depot Street stop should have local taxi service phone numbers on hand or know the locations of the village bus stops.

  • Taxi Zero – 1-315-262-04444
  • Potsdam Taxi – 1-315-268-8868 or 1-315-212-5617

College Collector Bus/Transportation:  For those students living off-campus, you will need to call Public Transit at 315-386-2600 two business days in advance to set up First Mile Last Mile to get from the bus stop on Constitution/Depot Street to your off-campus address. This program is available Monday-Friday and also on the dates listed above. You cannot ride the College Collector bus in St. Lawrence County until you have submitted your negative test result to the Student Health Center and signed the Clarkson Commitment.  

Please remember that masks are required for all public transportation.

We realize this is a new process for everyone. Please reach out with any questions. Most of all, I hope that you are eager to start your semester at Clarkson University, we look forward to seeing you on campus!


Kerop Janoyan, Dean of the Graduate School
Brian Grant, VP for Enrollment and Student Advancement

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