Location: Ithaca, New York
Percent Women: 51
Tuition (one year): $47, 286
Most Popular Majors:
Greek Life: Yes
Acceptance Rate: 15.6%
For more information about financial aid, scholarships, majors, study abroad, and average test scores, visit Cornell University’s website at http://www.cornell.edu/admissions/
Why Choose Cornell?
"Cornell is the perfect mix of a focus on academics combined with students who love to have a good time. Whether this achieved is through extracurricular activities, study sessions, or a Friday night frat party, Cornell’s got it all!”
“Cornell is the best combination of academics, sports, and fun. It is a place that gives students the opportunity to thrive in every thing they do. I ultimately chose Cornell because of the communications department, which is unlike that of every other school I applied to.”
“I don't know if there was any one particular thing that drew me to Cornell, but rather the combination of the beauty of upstate ny and campus, the academics, my major, the fact I could ski with proximity, and the people i met on campus. No single one of these things made me choose Cornell, but rather all of them together made it a clear and easy choice.”
"Ithaca is gorges! I was definitely sold on the super pretty campus and scenery! The fact that it was in the Ivy League was a plus!"
"Cornell is full of great staff and students! Upon my admission, I was quickly guided to people on campus that could help me answer all of my questions. None of the other universities that I applied to were that speedy."
“The best part of Cornell is the energy you feel the moment you step on campus. It’s the fact that everyone loves being here and isn’t afraid to show it. You can’t enter a building on campus without seeing people repping Cornell in one way or another.”
“Slope day is by far my favorite event at Cornell. On slope day, I don’t even mind getting up early because I get to spend the whole day with great friends at a great school. Add some great tunes to the mix – what more could a gal want?”
“Cornell throws a million new and challenging opportunities at you, and thus you get to do things here that you would never imagine being able to do. Everyone is motivated, everyone is doing something different, and everybody cares. It's this bubble where all kinds of people are all working towards being somebody who's full of life.”
"We have the best dining halls in the nation! There are a lot of great places to eat with a lot of great food."
"The gorges are magical! It's really great to be able to walk to class and have this beautiful body of flowing water to look at."
“The food and housing situation is disgraceful. I wish there were better housing options. Many of the co-ops are falling are apart and unhygienic. The bathrooms are not thoroughly cleaned on a regular basis in the west and north campus dorms (specifically Cook and Dickson). The dining halls regularly offer raw and undercooked poultry and meat. This is a serious health hazard. I do not want to die of salmonella at Cornell. The pantry that I was promised is empty. We only regularly have butter. Am I meant to feed myself with butter and coffee??! FYI: A sign of well-cooked plantain is not burnt shards of plantain.”
“I find the lack of school spirit at sporting events disappointing. Other than hockey, not much else gets major support. My friends and I go to all the weekend basketball games and cheer on the team and cheerleaders even though our team isn’t that great. We bond over being the entire crowd for the home side but it’d be nice to have more people come out.”
“Greek life is too big here and it gets too much support from the administration. By support I mean that they condone or at least allow a lot of what they do by lack of action…”
“Bread and fruit has a tendency to be moldy. Are we growing penicillin in our dining halls? Shouldn’t we be informed about this rampant penicillin garden?!\ The lettuce is rarely well washed. It is common to hear that students are falling sick from Cornell Dining. We pay too much to be paid this way. On too many occasions have I been served uncooked meat. I do not drink blood. So, please stop serving me blood. Even sushi does not bleed. Also please add some flavor to your meat. The cups and cutlery are not cleaned well enough. The standard of cleanliness of these utensils drops exponentially as service continues. The BRB cafés (such as libe café) participate in daylight robbery and charge way too much.”
"The walk up the slope from West Campus to Central Campus is entirely too tiring!"
New Collegiette on Campus
“Beware of the bad dancing during Tapestry. O-week in general though is very fun awkward ice breakers aside.”
"North Campus housing is mostly for freshmen. It really helps you get to know your classmates, but it doesn't separate you from the rest of the campus! There are a ton of upperclassmen that also live on North."
"Your first semester at Cornell can be really challenging, but there are a ton of resources on campus that can help you get used to things quicker than you'd think."
"The dining halls are really great, and the food is really good, but don't forget to eat your veggies. There are a lot of fried foods that are gonna be available, and self-control isn't as easy as you think."
All About Academics
“Course registration is like the Hunger Games. It’s pretty much every student for his/herself...If you don’t mentally prepare yourself for course registration, you will pretty much crash and burn.”
"Pre-Med life is no joke! Be prepared for all nighters and a lack of helpful curves. More than anything, a lot of the intro science classes are for weeding out students."
"Stay far, far, far away from group projects!"
"Make sure you take classes that you are genuinely interested. From classes like Wines to Meditating, there are an abundance of interesting classes that may not necessarily satisfy your major requirements, but will definitely be great conversation pieces."
"Get your swim test over with ASAP, so that all of your hardwork (academically) will pay off and you can graduate."
Learn from the Best
"Most of the professors that I have encountered are very helpful! I advise you to get to know them and learn about what they are researching since a lot of them are working on really cool projects. Get to know your teacher beyond the classroom. You will not regret it."
"Go to office hours...even if you do not have any questions. Having the professor and teaching assistants be able to recognize your face will help you in the long run."
"Take oceanography! The professor is really passionate about his class, and almost every student at Cornell has taken it."
"If you are in the Communication department, you will love it. Since it is a smaller department and major, there are plenty of close ties that will be formed between you, your faculty, and your peers."
"Don't be overwhelmed before getting here because we are an Ivy League. People have graduated before, people are graduating now, and people will be graduating in the future. Even though it may be difficult, you will have a lot of support and resources...you can do it!"
Interests & Involvement
"Don't get too caught up in your academics and forget to join clubs! These are places where you'll find a lot of friends that will share your interests."
"Most students on campus are involved with organizations that they are involved with. You get to meet a lot of interesting people that do a lot of interesting things."
"I love being a part of marching band! I was afraid that I wouldn't enjoy it as much as I did in high school, but I was wrong."
"I was a part of an organization called Les Femmes de Substance. It is a pre-professional organization for women of color. Not only did a meet a bunch of supportive women of color, but I also got ahold of a lot of professional tips that I will keep forever."
"My only regret as a senior is not being involved. Sure, I had lots of time to study, but not so much time to enjoy myself."
“Most people only venture over to Schoelkopf Stadium once a year for the homecoming game. You could say that football isn’t one of our strong suits. However, what we lack on the field we certainly make up for on the hockey rink!”
"Our school has a lot of intramural teams and club spirits that you should definitely join if you're looking to have fun."
"There isn't as much school spirit as I would like around Homecoming. Kinda upsetting, but I try to move past it."
"Hockey is big, big, big here! I also personally enjoy our basketball teams. I just wish more of us would support our athletic teams."
"Our sport is to study."
"Being on campus is empowering. There are a ton of resources for us on campus and tons of opportunity."
"There are a ton of clubs that you could join that are for women! This ranges from political clubs to clubs about activities that you really enjoy doing."
"Being a woman on campus that is also an engineer is interesting. There aren't many of us, but the few of us kick butt! Nothing more intimidating than a woman who knows her stuff."
"Fashion on campus is pretty chill. Literally. It's so cold all the time that you're more worried about bundling yourself up than looking cute."
"A lot of girls on campus shop online a lot. Mostly because we are in Ithaca, and the mall isn't too trendy. If you can't make the 45 minute drive to Syracuse, then you better create a paypal and learn your measurements because you will be doing a lot of online shopping."
Food & Drink
“Cornell students love food trucks, especially for a late night snack. We have some new additions, such as the crepe truck and the Asian food truck, while the classics like Louie’s have been around since my parents went to Cornell.”
“I am a very picky eater, but you just cant go wrong with the Trillium salad bar!”
“To be honest, with access to all the top restaurants that NYC has to offer this summer, all I really wanted was bu daily Terrace salad. the food at Cornell is not only top notch, but also high quality and with great variety.”
"The Cornell Store has REAL cheesecake from the Cheesecake Factory! It's super awesome."
"The food at Cornell is great when you first get here, but eventually you get tired of what RPCC and Appel has to offer."
“Its so much fun going out to bars here because even if you go out with only one or two friends, you’re guaranteed to see tons of familiar faces wherever you go and always have a great time.”
“Greek life accounts for a huge part of the social scene at Cornell. But it’s really amazing how every organization becomes like a “frat.” Each team or club—from Hockey to Model UN—serves as a social outlet for students, forming a strong community and even throwing parties. Its great that students who are not interested in being involved in Greek life can still form a great group of likeminded friends and have a good time!”
“Cornell is truly a mix of working hard and playing hard. It is an Ivy league school so students obviously care a lot about schoolwork, but at the same time every night of the week people are ready to have a good time and go out to bars--with the hopes that they’ll be able to make it to class the next morning.”
“There are definitely alternatives to drinking or going to a party on a typical weekend--I’m just not sure what they are.”
"On Wednesdays, Fishbowls are where you need to be at!"
“All freshmen live on North Campus their first year and are randomly assigned to a building. Some people luck out and get to live in CKB the newest buildings, other get stuck living in the disease ridden Donlon.”
“Clara Dickson (North Campus) needs to have its bathrooms cleaned more frequently and more thoroughly. The walls of the stalls are severely neglected. Simply picking up stray tissue dmoes not equate to a clean bathroom.”
“I lived in Balch my freshman year. Don’t do it ladies. Just don’t.”
“Clara Dickson was safe and very social. I loved it (excluding the hygiene issues). It was a great transition into college life. A tight knit community was easily formed.”
“The free food events are great for bonding. Everyone shows up!!!”
“West is definitely a step up from North and the house system reminds me of the Harry Potter houses!”
“Living in Collegetown should be something that every student at Cornell does. Even just struggling to find housing off-campus is part of the experience here.”
“Ithaca has that beautiful, quaint small town feel which is great during the day but the nightlife is not so exciting. At least not for those who don’t enjoy going to frat house parties or can’t legally join the bar scene, which also doesn’t look that exciting. If you don’t enjoy going to parties, most nights are spent inside binge watching shows on Netflix or feeling bored out of your mind.”
“Ithaca is rural. Beware: There are cults around here. Most of what Ithaca has to offer is within a walking distance or a short bus ride away. We do not really mix with the locals. We do however; have opportunities to mix with the students from other colleges in the area. Many people attend salsa dances outside of Cornell.”
“Collegetown has some solid food places. CTB is the crown jewel of Collegetown and the new late night crepe truck is amazing after a night out.”
“I wish we socialized with the “townies” more because the people of Ithaca are so interesting and lively.”
“Off-campus activities are interesting in Ithaca given how the town is pretty much centered around college students whether they be from Cornell or from Ithaca College. Ithaca is very hipster-hippie-art-student friendly so if you’re into any of that or just want the small town feel with wonderful views of nature then this is the place for you.”
HC's Complete College Guide: Cornell University
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