Cornell University

Ithaca, New York
www.cornell.edu 300 Day Hall, Ithaca, NY, 14853
A+ Overall Grade
  • A+ Academics
  • B+ Athletics
  • A Campus
  • A+ Diversity
  • A+ Value
  • A Party Scene

Cornell Admissions

Acceptance Rate 8.69%
Acceptance Deadline January 2
Students Receiving Financial Aid 62.12%

If you’ve thought about applying to the Ivy League schools, chances are Cornell has crossed your mind. Located in Ithaca, NY, Cornell University boasts over 4,000 courses, 100 academic departments, nearly 80 undergraduate majors, and over 120 minors. 

With all of these options, you may feel like Cornell is the perfect place for you. If so, you’ll have to start thinking about Cornell admissions. As you consider the Cornell admissions process, you should pay attention to the Cornell University requirements. This will help you understand how to prepare a strong application. 

Let’s discuss some key details about the Cornell University admissions rate. 

Cornell admissions rate: what you need to know

As the Cornell admissions statistics will tell you, the Cornell admissions rate is low. As an Ivy League school, Cornell can afford to be pretty selective with the Cornell enrollment. The Cornell acceptance rate is quite low, just 8.69% for the class of 2025. As you prepare your Cornell application, keep these statistics in mind. While the Cornell admissions rate is low, this doesn’t mean you have no chance of getting in. 

Last year, 67,380 Cornell enrollment hopefuls filled out the Cornell application. Due to the low Cornell acceptance rate, only 5,852 got in. Only 8 out of every 100 applicants were offered a spot in the Cornell enrollment. Clearly, the Cornell University admissions process is a competitive one. 

However, don’t let these numbers discourage you as you begin your Cornell admissions journey. There are plenty of ways to stand out to Cornell University admissions officers. Read on as we explore how to get into Cornell, including need to know information like what the Cornell University requirements are, the Cornell GPA requirements, what Cornell admissions officers are looking for, and more. 

What is Cornell University known for?

Founded in 1865, Cornell is a privately endowed research university and a partner of the State University of New York. They are a federal land-grant institution in New York State with 50 Nobel Laureates in their alumni pool. 

Cornell has 16 colleges and schools, including nine undergraduate divisions. In 2019, Cornell adopted a set of core values.

Cornell’s core values are:

  • Purposeful Discovery
  • Free and Open Inquiry and Expression
  • A Community of Belonging
  • Exploration across Boundaries
  • Changing Lives through Public Engagement
  • Respect for the Natural Environment. 

Of course, Cornell University is known for being one of eight Ivy League colleges. However, there’s a lot that sets Cornell apart from its Ivy companions. Cornell is ranked #17 in the U.S. News list of Best National Universities. However, Cornell recently became the #1 school in New York after a scandal rocked Columbia University

Want to learn more about student life at Cornell? Check out our library of articles to read all about housing and dining, on campus involvement, and Cornell traditions. 

Cornell admissions: what are the requirements?

Now that you know a little more about Cornell University, let’s talk more about Cornell admissions. First, you should familiarize yourself with what first-year applicants need for the Cornell application. You should also make sure you understand the Cornell application deadline and the Cornell University requirements. 

The Cornell application deadline for Early Decision applicants is November 1. The regular Cornell admissions deadline is January 2. You must have all your materials in the Cornell admissions portal by these dates at the latest if you want the Cornell admissions team to consider your application.

What do you need to upload to the Cornell admissions portal? First of all, you must complete the Common Application. To meet the Cornell University requirements for admission, you must also submit several important things.

 Cornell admissions requirements:

  • School report
  • Counselor recommendation
  • Two teacher evaluations
  • Midyear report (when your mid-year grades are available)
  • Official secondary/high school transcript
  • $80 application fee or fee waiver
  • Cornell University Questions and Writing Supplement (CA)
  • Interviews or portfolio and design submissions (optional depending on your desired school of Cornell enrollment)

As you can see, there are a number of components to the Cornell admissions process. However, most of these are fairly standardized across all colleges, so the Cornell admissions requirements are nothing out of the ordinary. 

In order to contend with the low Cornell admissions rate, you should be sure to submit all the necessary materials. You should pay close attention to the Cornell University requirements as you start the Cornell admissions process. There are no Cornell GPA requirements, but you should aim for a high GPA. You should also ensure you meet the Cornell application deadline. 

Still have questions for the Cornell admissions office? Reach out to them here. Then, read up on how to ace the Cornell admissions supplemental essay and how to stand out in the Cornell admissions process. You can also watch our Cornell University admissions webinar for even more information.

Is it easier to get into Cornell Early Decision?

You may wonder if applying to Cornell University admissions Early Decision will impact the Cornell admissions rate. To give you an idea of how Early Decision impacts admissions rates, let’s break down some Cornell admissions statistics. 

As we mentioned above, the Cornell acceptance rate for the class of 2025 was around 8.6%. However, this Cornell admissions rate applied to both Early and Regular Decision applicants. If we look more closely at the Cornell admissions statistics for Early Decision applicants, we see a slightly different number. Out of 9,017 Cornell admissions hopefuls who applied for the Early Cornell application deadline, 1,930 were admitted. This means the ED acceptance rate was 21.4%. 

However, while this number is much higher than the overall Cornell acceptance rate, statistics aren’t everything. The ED pool often includes stronger applicants who would already have a better chance in the Cornell admissions process. Cornell also does not track demonstrated interest. So, don’t think that your Cornell admissions odds are automatically higher if you apply early. 

We can also use this statistic to calculate the Regular Decision Cornell acceptance rate. The Cornell admissions rate for applicants who waited until January 2nd to send their application to the Cornell admissions office was only 6.7%. 

However, before you speed through that Cornell admissions portal and hit “submit,” you need to consider a few things. Firstly, an Early Decision Cornell application will be binding. This means that if you apply and are offered an Early spot in the Cornell enrollment, you must accept. So, this may not be the best option if you’re not totally sold on Cornell or need to compare financial aid packages from other schools.

Secondly, you don’t want to rush to submit your application by the Early Cornell admissions deadline if it’s not your best work. That higher Early Cornell acceptance rate won’t matter if you submit a rushed, unpolished application to the Cornell admissions portal. You’re better off taking the time you need to make thoughtful edits. Then, you can submit in January under the regular Cornell application deadline. 

Cornell admissions process: more information

We’ve gone over the Cornell admission rate, Cornell admissions statistics, Cornell admissions portal, and even how to contact the Cornell admissions office. Now, let’s talk about another part of the Cornell University requirements: the Cornell GPA requirements.  

You may believe that there’s a minimum requirement to submit your application to Cornell admissions. However, this is not true. Although the standards for Cornell University admissions are high, there are no minimum Cornell GPA requirements. Cornell admissions officers will evaluate your application based on numerous different factors, and GPA is only one part of the puzzle. 

However, referring back to the Cornell admissions statistics, 84.2% of the Cornell enrollment were in the top tenth of their high school graduating class. Furthermore, 96.4% of students were in the top quarter of their high school class. So, although there are no minimum Cornell GPA requirements, you should definitely strive to be in the top of your class. 

Still wondering how to get into Cornell? Check out our How to Get into Cornell guide. If you want to learn more about Cornell, visit the Cornell admissions website or complete a virtual visit to see if Cornell is right for you.

Cornell admissions- final thoughts

We hope this breakdown of the Cornell University admissions process helps get you excited about your application. The Cornell admissions process is just like that of any top college. To impress Cornell admissions officers, you want to highlight your strengths by building a compelling candidate profile. 

Although there’s lots to think about, like the Cornell admissions statistics and the low Cornell acceptance rate, don’t let any of this discourage you from submitting to the Cornell admissions portal. Cornell admissions officers want to be impressed by you, so make sure you put your best foot forward in the admissions process. 

Cornell Tuition

Net Price* $28,921
Average Total Aid Awarded $6,810
Students Receiving Financial Aid 62.12%
*Average cost after financial aid for students receiving grant or scholarship aid, as reported by the college.

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Cornell Academics

Student Faculty Ratio 9:1

Cornell Majors

Most Popular Majors
  • Biology
  • Computer Science
  • Business
  • Hospitality and Tourism Management
  • Agricultural Business
  • Economics
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Political Science and Government
  • Engineering
  • Animal Sciences and Husbandry

Online Courses at Cornell

Offers Online Courses Yes

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Cornell Students

Full-Time Undergrad Enrollment 15,175
Part-Time Undergraduates 7

Cornell Alumni at CollegeAdvisor

Janice Kim
Cornell University
Hello! I graduated from Cornell University in 2020 with a BS in Biology and minors in Policy Analysis & Management, Business, and Law. I currently live in NYC and work as a Finance & Operations Management Associate in the healthcare sector. Over the past 6 years I've had experience as an SAT tutor, mentoring first-generation college students through a peer mentor program, editing college application essays, and working with prospective high school students as an advisor in my college's admissions office. I can't wait to get to know you and help you and your loved ones navigate the application process!
Abdalla Osman
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Hello! I am Abdalla and I am a recent MIT grad. I studied mechanical engineering and energy studies and currently work in the renewable energy field. On campus I was a lead engineer in the MIT Solar Electric Vehicle Team and an undergraduate researcher in the Nuclear Science and Engineering department. In my free time I enjoy practicing Judo, playing soccer, and being in nature. I look forward to working with you through your college application journey!

Also Accepted to

Josie Pearce
Dartmouth College
Josie graduated cum laude from Dartmouth College in 2020. At Dartmouth, she majored in Government, minored in Spanish, and was an editor at the Dartmouth Law Journal. She works as a PR Assistant at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP in their Boston office. Josie is pursuing a JD/MD joint degree and is attending Harvard for her pre-medical post-bacc. She is an admissions interviewer for Dartmouth College and has ample experience with the college interview process and essay writing.

Also Accepted to

Phillip Hu
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
I am currently an urban planner and designer based in Boston. I studied architecture and planning at MIT and graduated with both an undergraduate degree and Master in City Planning. At MIT, I taught as a Teaching Assistant for a course on urban planning history and co-led a campus art and literature magazine as the art editor. For the past two years, I have mentored more than 40 students as a college admissions advisor, helping my students navigate the college admissions process and discover their voice through their personal essays.

Also Accepted to

Ishaani Khatri
Brown University
Hi there! My name is Ishaani, and I'm a senior in Brown University's Program in Liberal Medical Education (PLME), where I study Computational Biology. Outside of class, I play in a jazz ensemble, write and edit for the [email protected] magazine, advise freshman at Brown, and research at the Center for Computational Molecular Biology. I've been working as a college advisor for 2+ years, and I look forward to supporting you all throughout the college admissions process!

Also Accepted to

Dominique Turner
Cornell University
Dominique is originally from the Washington, D.C. area and is a recent graduate of Cornell University. At Cornell, Dominique majored in Policy Analysis and Management and minored in Law and Society. She has worked on the consultant end of the college admissions process for three years, and specializes in essay writing and finding the “hook” that creates a strong personal essay. She will be working in New York City for a strategic communications firm especially focused on the financial aspects of companies. When she’s not helping her students with essays and their applications, she enjoys reading, discussing politics, running and listening to podcasts, specifically NPR’s “How I Built This”.
Vignesh Namasivayam
Yale University
Hi there! I'm Vig Namasivayam, a 2020 grad of Yale. I strongly believe that every student has a path to a great school if they embrace who they are. For me, delving into my extracurriculars is what put me in a great position to succeed. For others, it's their academic or athletic passions. I'm really excited to help you navigate a tough and scary process and make it as stress-free as possible; I was a psychology major at school, which I loved because it has given me the tools to to dig into how other people think, which helps me help them. Beyond that, I really love entertainment, any kind. Since high school, I've been really involved in theater, culminating in my being the treasurer for the Yale Dramatic Association. I also was the Sports Director for our school's radio, getting the opportunity to travel and broadcast sports games. I was also the Treasurer for the Class of 2020. I would also be remiss to mention that I've definitely seen more TV shows than anyone I know.

Also Accepted to

Katie Chiou
Brown University
Hi! My name is Katie and I'm a rising senior in Brown's Program in Liberal Medical Education (PLME) concentrating in medical anthropology. I've worked for over three years in college advising, with experience in essay editing and extracurricular advising. I specialize in BS/MD applications and interview prep.

Also Accepted to

Jae Chang
Cornell University
I am a senior at Cornell University, studying Government and China & Asia-Pacific Studies. My main interests are international relations, primarily US foreign policy in East Asia. During my time at Cornell, I have written for a foreign policy magazine, researched with a professor, and studied off-campus in Washington DC while interning with an NGO. Since my freshman year, I have helped students with college applications through all parts of the admissions process, from researching schools to applying for financial aid. Through my experience, I have talked to a vast range of students about their own experience and how to bring out the most of it in their essays.

Also Accepted to

Clients Accepted to Cornell

Laila Rahbari
Cornell

I worked with Pam and she completely saved my application! I’m extremely satisfied with my results and would definitely recommend college advisor to someone else. We worked on individual essays and she truly cared about my application. I’m so grateful to get accepted to Cornell and it wouldn’t have been without college advisor.

Lamiya Adri
Vanderbilt University

CollegeAdvisor helped me in the best possible way during the application process. My advisor paid attention to all the details during the application and took extra time to work with me one-on-one. It wouldn’t have gotten into my dream schools without the help of my advisor. I am grateful and blessed to be a part of the CollegeAdvisor program.

Lucas McKamey
Cornell University

Going into the college application process, I didn’t even know what CommonApp was, much less who I was or what characteristics I wanted to present to these mysterious arbiters of my next four years. My experience with CollegeAdvisor and, specifically, my mentor, Julia, has equipped me with the confidence, supportive guidance, and sense of identity to slay that application dragon once and for all. I’m confident whoever is found underneath Julia’s congenial tutelage will embrace a similar triumph over this fire-breathing devil.

Ignacio Estrada
Cornell University

CollegeAdvisor was incredible. The way the advisors help you every step of the way with intuitive and precise techniques to better promote yourself as an academic candidate, is truly remarkable.

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