Location
Ithaca, NY
Undergrads
14,245
Tuition
$43,413
Admission Difficulty
Very Hard
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Reviews 1361 total reviews with an average rating of 3.6

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5 College Sophomore

Off-Campus Housing: Cheaper Than Living on Campus – It is a hassle finding a room on campus, and if someone waits until the last minute he/she runs the risk of not being able to find an apartment in time either. I found my apartment during my first semester in school and signed the lease as soon as the landlord let me during second semester. My apartment is very close to school, is cheaper than the dorms, and provides a shuttle that rides to campus and back every 15 minutes. Needless to say I am very happy.

5 College Sophomore

Off-Campus Dining: Delicious and Economical – Collegetown is where most of CU's restaurants are located, and its only a bus ride away. My favorite restaurant there is Stella's. It was a trendy appeal during the day, and a romantic appeal during the night so it's the perfect place for a first date. On other occasions my friends and I order bento boxes from Capital Kitchen, it's an easy way to order a lot of food without having to pay a lot of money.

5 College Freshman

Greek Life: It's Definitely There.. A bit more than 30% of students are in Greek Life, so it is definitely a powerful force on campus. That said, you will find absolutely no problem fitting in or having fun if you opt out of becoming Greek.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Diversity: You can find any type of student. Whether it be race, gender, orientation, etc., every group is prevalent on campus.

5 College Sophomore

Facilities: Cooperative Housing – The existence of cooperative houses is one of the best parts of Cornell. Each house has a different atmosphere, and each is very welcoming. You get tons of delicious, home-cooked meals, learn how to cook for a large number of people, gain skills in cleaning, gain leadership skills, and there are always others there if you need help or support.

3 College Sophomore

Academics: Depends on the Classes, Departments, Etc – Classes are kind of hit or miss. I've had fantastic ones and poor ones. Fortunately, the fantastic ones are so good that that outweigh the negatives of the bad ones. If you aren't sure about a class, definitely consider dropping it -- the two classes I consider to have been the biggest wastes of my time were both classes that I considered dropping. Go with your gut. If you can manage to drop it (ie. if it isn't required for your major), drop it.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Freshman

Transportation: it is best to use the campus bus service, parking very limited and the cost to have a car on campus is outrageous

4 College Junior

Overall Experience: Great Place to Learn – Cornell offers so many opportunities as far as classes and research goes. You can pretty much take any class or research anything that you want to. Cornell is also relatively big so you can meet and experience new things which is very good for people who are from small towns. I would choose to come here again, Cornell has treated me well.

3 College Junior

Campus Housing: Depends on What You Get – At Cornell you can get a dorm room in a building dating back to the opening of the school, or the new, improved dorm rooms that are much more friendly. The way Cornell chooses who rooms with who isn't very effective. You could get a roommate who is completely different from you or doesn't even speak the same language. Its all the luck of the draw.

4 College Junior

Local Atmosphere: Beautiful Campus – Cornell University is located very close to Cayuga Lake and has many beautiful gorges, gardens and pathways. Cornell University is great for nature lovers and offers a large variety of places to dine, shop and just hang out with friends.

5 College Freshman

Scholarships: Cornell, like most other ivies (except Brown), is incredible with Financial Aid. They give very generous packages and don't give loans.

3 people found this useful Report
3 College Freshman

Athletics: Tons of School Spirit, but Not That Atheltics Focused – Don't get me wrong, Cornell pays big bucks to bring in the best athletes, but aside from Basketball, Wrestling, and Hockey, Cornell students don't get too excited over it. The games are all these in state of the art studios, and freshman rush the field for homecoming is a big deal, but it's not the main focus of campus.

5 College Freshman

Campus Dining: Amazing Options, Amazing Food – Cornell food is amazing. There are just so many options everywhere!

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Sophomore

Computers: Available Anywhere – Cornell University has great computer systems. All libraries on the campus have computers available for research or quick usage, and many computers lend laptops for free of charge with WiFi all around the campus. Most people have their own computers, but it is definitely not a problem if you don't own one. Many people have their own printers, but not entirely necessary.

4 College Sophomore

Local Atmosphere: Ithaca is a small city located in northern part of New York. Unlike the images of the bright, busy cities full of tall building in New York, Ithaca is a very quiet, friendly, and relaxing city with beautiful scenery on Cornell Campus all year round. A little infamous for the weather during the winter, but Cornell is the place where you feel home.

4 College Senior

Nightlife: Work Hard Party Hard – Cornell is known for a work hard party hard nightlife. Fraternity parties are the way to go for freshmen first semester; second semester is home to lots of mixers for those who joined Greek organizations. Collegetown bars are fun but can get repetitive by your senior year. There is a house/frat party to bar transition that occurs in the junior year.

3 College Senior

Campus Housing: Good Experience – The north campus residence halls are almost always social, except for the high and low rise buildings. The west dorms are very new, air conditioned, and lots of space. Most upperclassmen do live off campus in fraternities/sororities or in collegetown.

4 College Senior

Campus Dining: Lots of Variety – There are numerous dining halls to frequent both on North and West campus. The north dining halls offer a wide variety of food and are a social environment. The West dining halls are smaller and quieter, but the food is very good, best on campus. Late night Bear Necessities ("Nasties") runs are always a great freshman experience.

3 College Freshman

Athletics: Our hockey team is pretty good ,and the games are really fun to watch. We have a great Ultimate Frisbee team. I wish our football team was a little better.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Freshman

Off-Campus Dining: There are a lot of good and cheap fast food places in collegetown, include CTB (Collegwtown Bagels). If you go down to the commons, there are more restaurant type eateries, which are generally more expensive, but also more tasty.

4 College Freshman

Facilities: Libraries (Uris and Olin) – The two main libraries that I got to (Uris and Olin) are have very nice views and are very conducive to getting work done. The Kinkeldey room in Uris is especially nice.

3 College Freshman

Transportation: TCAT schmeCAT – The way this works at large schools, not to mention large universities that cover a lot of ground and in places where students don't really want to walk to class, is that the buses run frequently between the most important places on campus (ie UMich). Not likely here. Although the TCAT buses are useful for what they are, they aren't a campus bus service. It's like Cornell paid such and such dollars to the county to have them devote 3-5 bus lines to the campus. Not only are the buses often inconvenient for where you want to go, they only come every 15 minutes at best, and if you want to take it to class in the morning, you usually have the same idea as everyone else, so the bus is too full to accept all the people. Before you make any trip, you're gonna want to check up on tcatbus.com to make sure you plan your timing, otherwise you could get stuck waiting for 30 minutes for a bus to come get you.

3 College Freshman

Weather: Yea it's cold in the winter, you're not the first person from LA who complains that it's not 70 in December. The tradeoff: snow-days, we had two this year, and let me tell you it's the best thing you'll ever read in an email at 8am when you wake up. The bad part about it is the failure of the university to do even a mediocre job of clearing paths, even on steep hills. Snow gets walked on, gets packed, becomes ice, snow melts, ice remains, and it's sometimes expected of you to take the most circuitous route imaginable if you want to stick to cleared paths. If I ran the school, I'm sure I'd be aware of the thousands of near broke college students who would probably shovel walkways four hours a week for minimum wage.

4 College Freshman

Facilities: You Can Always Be Busier – No matter what you want to do, play a sport, join greek life, learn about something, or just find stuff to do, you can find something. I play two club sports and it fills up my time and is what I look forward to every day. That said, don't discount classes that look fun and interesting, they can get you just as excited as anything else.

3 College Freshman

Drug Safety: You Get What You Look for – Obviously you're going to find a lot of drinking at frats. Smoking isn't uncommon but not a day in day out thing for many people. Other than that, if you don't want to be a part of it it won't bother you.

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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
Hometown
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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