Ithaca, NY
Admission Difficulty
Very Hard
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Reviews 1481 total reviews with an average rating of 3.6

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4 Recent Alumnus

Overall Experience: Most professors are okay, there are only very few bad professors. It is really about pairing up to do research.

2 people found this useful Report
4 Recent Alumnus

Overall Experience: It is hard to say when this is the only school I have been to. I like to think that the degree from this school carries some value. It really is about the research and project opportunities that you had while you are here.

2 people found this useful Report
4 Recent Alumnus

Scholarships: They always lose my W-2. Not sure why.

1 person found this useful Report
5 Recent Alumnus

Academics: Lots of work, lots of learning. Do a project team or research, or your education is worth nothing in the real world!

2 people found this useful Report
5 Recent Alumnus

Academics: Mechanical engineers work really hard, and have lots of opportunities.

1 person found this useful Report
4 Recent Alumnus

Majors: First one was a bit boring near the end, since I ran out of stuff to do. Second was great and hands on. Cornell does not help you get them.

5 Recent Alumnus

Majors: Cornell undergrads get into Cornell grad really easily. I applied in 30 mins. No GRE

2 people found this useful Report
4 Recent Alumnus

Off-Campus Dining: Lots of korean bbq. yum

3 Recent Alumnus

Nightlife: Since the death of frat parties, it has gone way downhill.

4 College Sophomore

Overall Experience: First semester I wasn't happy being across the country from my home. But second semester was a lot better even though my classes were harder and I slept even less. I just finally connected with some people and made good friends so it was fun. I am in an excellent engineering program and I know that if I survive it, I'll be prepared to take on any challenge that I face in the future. Because of this, I would still pick Cornell if I could choose again. Also, despite the long winter, the place really is gorgeous and you really learn to appreciate nature.

3 people found this useful Report
College Sophomore

Scholarships: I was not eligible for financial aid and the school does not offer scholarships. It isn't easy for my family to pay the tuition but we have enough of an income that we don't qualify for aid.

2 people found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Campus Strictness: The school's policies against alcohol, drug use, and cheating are strict if the students get caught. However, much goes unnoticed.

4 College Sophomore

Health & Safety: I feel very safe on campus. You don't really see the police but we have a blue light system and we get emails from them with safety tips and reported crimes. Not many crimes were reported. I feel the least safe at big parties with lots of people under the influence.

College Sophomore

Off-Campus Housing: I have no experience trying to find off campus housing yet.

3 College Sophomore

Off-Campus Dining: The off campus food is always good and there is a lot of diversity. However, unless you have a car many places aren't convenient.

3 College Sophomore

Majors: I am in the engineering program and the admission process was typical for other colleges using the common app. You just needed to have a high GPA and SAT/ACT score (especially in the math section)

4 College Sophomore

Majors: The program is very difficult and the workload is high. I enjoyed the classes where I enjoyed the professor as well. The program provides us with ample opportunities to find an internship or job and I am not worried about my future after college.

College Sophomore

Facilities: I feel like I haven't learned enough about what my school has (or what other schools have) that sets it apart

4 College Sophomore

Facilities: The facilities are nice, we have a ton of libraries, and plenty of green space. The campus is beautiful.

4 College Sophomore

Guys & Girls: Everyone is so different and I think that's a good thing. There are guys and girls who care about looking nice everyday and partying, and there are those who are very dedicated to their school work and don't socialize much. A lot of the students are from New York so how they dress can be similar at times but it isn't overbearing. You really will meet all kinds of people with a multitude of interests and hobbies.

4 College Sophomore

Campus Dining: The food always tastes good and there is usually a couple places open at any time of the day before 2am. By the end of the year though you start to predict the rotation of the food in the dining hall and it can get old.

3 College Sophomore

Greek Life: I did not join Greek life but many people I know did. There is a lot of pressure to join but no one looks down on you for not being Greek. In general, non-Greeks see Greek students as only joining for better access to alcohol and more opportunities to hook up. The housing is better for frats because there are so many of them that the pledge classes stay small. The sorority housing is tight and not every girl makes it into the house because the pledge classes are around 60 girls.

3 College Sophomore

Athletics: School spirit is high for only some sports (like ice hockey) and not all of them

4 College Senior

Diversity: There are people from every race, nation, and creed here, and there's pretty much an organization for each one of them. Cornell's financial aid helps a lot of socioeconomically disadvantage people to still be able to come here and get a world-class education. There are also a lot of rich kids here though. LGBTQ is a fairly large community on campus, but they're still trying to be more accepted. They actually have secret parties every now and then, but they're pretty strictly LGBTQ only. Cornell itself is not a religious school, but some religious groups on campus have a good presence and many active members, such as Catholicism and Judaism. But I never met so many atheists and agnostics before coming to Cornell either. And most people at Cornell are very liberal. There are very few conservatives who go here. Ithaca itself is extremely liberal too. The bottom line is that Cornell is a mixing pot and no one really minds. We all pretty much get along and accept everyone. I've never really heard of or knew anyone who felt discriminated here.

5 College Senior

Facilities: There's always something to do. Cornell has some really exciting things that are constantly taking place on campus. And some people are just so brilliant here that it's truly awe-inspiring. Classes can be tough sometimes, but it's worth it, because it's Cornell. There's also really cool research going on here all the time and we're always making ground-breaking discoveries.


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Goldwin-Smith Hall
Goldwin-Smith Hall
Goldwin-Smith Hall Goldwin-Smith Hall
Photo by Gaodifan under Public Domain | Source

Overall ExperienceWhat's This?

Mandy Kain and Radhika Arora
Hewlett, N.Y., and Ithaca, N.Y.
View all previous student authors

Students express both praise and criticism of their overall experience at Cornell University. Positive experiences seem to outweigh negative ones, with most agreeing that even some of the negative aspects of Cornell—the immense workload, competition, dreary weather, and social pressures of a large campus—have taught them valuable life lessons. The large size of the campus can be both a blessing and a curse.Cornell offers a wealth of academic, professional, and personal opportunities, but can also offers the feeling of getting lost in the crowd.

Most students agree that it falls on the individual to make the most out of one’s time at Cornell to be outgoing, open to new ideas and experiences, and proactive in pursuit of one’s goals. Classes are difficult, and no one can expect to coast, but for those who are willing to work hard, classes can be very fulfilling. Finding a balance between coursework and social activities can be difficult, but if you can manage it, you will find a campus filled with new and interesting activities to get involved in.

Admitted Students' GPA/Test Scores More on admissions . . .

Applicant Status At Cornell University

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