Cornell University Panel￼
Want to learn more about what it takes to apply to and attend Cornell University? Join Cornell alum Meaghan Gee and current student Ebreez Elbashir as they discuss their admissions and undergraduate experiences. Come ready to learn and bring your questions!
2022-08-04 – Cornell University Panel
Hi, everyone. Welcome to CollegeAdvisor’s webinar on Cornell University. To orient everyone with the webinar timing, we’ll start off with a presentation. Then answer your questions on a live Q&A on the sidebar. You can download your slides and you can start to meeting your questions on the Q&A tab.
Now let’s meet our panelists.
Um, yeah, sure. I can go first. Uh, hi everyone. My name is Ebreez. I am the class of 2024 at Cornell, and I’m an advisor here at CollegeAdvisor and super excited to talk to everyone today.
Hi everyone. My name is Meaghan. Um, I graduated from Cornell in 2019, majored in industrial labor relations and I’m tuning in from New Jersey. Cool. So real quick, before we get started, we wanna ask, what grade are you in this year? So eighth, ninth, 10th, 11th, 12th, or other, and other can be if you’re a transfer student or if you’re taking a gap year, and if you’re a parent on call, you can select the grade that your student, uh, is in.
And while we work for that, uh, can y’all tell us, um, what is your favorite course you’ve taken or you took at Cornell?
Um, yeah. Uh, so this past semester I took this class called, uh, new media and society. Um, it’s an information science class and it was, uh, kind of explored like, you know, cultural and political landscapes in like digital media. Um, and so we were talking about a lot of things that were super relevant today.
And so it was, it was just really interesting class. That sounds really cool. Um, I think one of my favorite classes at Cornell was probably a class that. Kind of showed you what the economics of education and like the university system was. So you’d get an understanding of like how professors get paid, um, how the facilities work and how like your, what your tuition actually gets applied to.
So that was really interesting and something that I definitely did not know before. Great. And I also attend Cornell. My favorite class was my intro to education class. So that was, um, fun. And also if anyone is having audio issues, try logging out and logging back in, and if it is across the board, we will stop the webinar it’s um, just in case.
But, um, yeah, if you are having tech issues, just try logging out and logging back in, but it’s looking like we have 1%, eighth grade, 3%, ninth grade, 22%, 10th grade, 35%, 11th grade, 37%, 12th grade making up the majority. Well, barely the majority, uh, and 3% other. Um, so yeah, and now y’all can control the slides.
Okay. Awesome. So should we get started?
Okay, great. So what was my college application process like? Um, it was a couple years ago. I graduated from high school in 2015, so I was really going through the process in 2014, but in reality it started a lot earlier. So my sister is two years older than me. Um, so I kind of trailed along as my parents and my family, um, took her around to different colleges to visit, um, a lot of those being Ivy leagues and like top 20 schools.
Um, as a junior, I, you know, I was really, really interested in those schools, but it wasn’t necessarily like imperative for me to go to one really. Um, but I did. Have to kind of embark on a lot of like self-reflection, I didn’t really know what I wanted to do when I grew up. Um, so I was thinking about like, what should I study?
Like what kind of majors and programs would I be interested in? Um, so I think that’s a really important part of the college admissions journey. Just getting an understanding of like, what are you interested in and what are you excited to study for the next four years? Um, so with that, I did a lot of research, um, knowing that I didn’t know what I wanna do.
I knew I kind of had to think about majors, that I could do a lot of different things with. So that’s where I kind of landed with kind of business programs and curriculums that kind of touch upon a lot of different subjects. And so when I finally got to the point of actually applying, because I didn’t really know what I wanted to do, I wanted to make sure to apply to a good amount of school.
So I had some options. So I did end up applying to 10 schools, two of them being Ivy leagues, and then, uh, the other schools being a mix of kind of like state schools and private schools and something that I didn’t expect was that there would be so many essays to write, not just the CommonApp, but also like all of the supplemental essays, um, and even like some scholarship essays as well.
So if I could suggest anything, um, as you embark on your college application process, definitely start early. If you’re a senior. It’s August. I think this is a great time to start thinking about what are you gonna write for your CommonApps, you know, finalize that college list and get ready to write those essays.
Um, so yeah, I would say that my college application process was a really great learning journey. Just thinking about, you know, like learning more about myself, learning more about what I want, learning more about what schools would fit my needs. And then finally also learning a lot about time management.
Question is what other Ivy leagues where I was, I can have two Ivy leagues. Um, I applied to Cornell and Columbia and I also wanted to apply to UPenn, but it ended up not making the cut. Um, and so I guess like the reason why I applied to Cornell is because first, um, my sister did end up going there and I, um, was very familiar with it basically.
So I knew kind of what I was getting into. And then in terms of Columbia, so I mentioned I’m treating it from New Jersey, had a chance to tour, um, really liked kind of like the vibe of like the city. So it’s very interesting because there’s like the city environment and then there’s Cornell, which is like more of a rural location, which I’ll get more into.
So, um, what, why ultimately decided on Cornell was the academic program. As I mentioned before I was interested in either like business or something that I can just like explore a lot of different things. So at Cornell there’s two, well, there’s actually three kind of like business focused majors. Um, there’s applied economics and management, which is in the, um, the college of agriculture and life sciences, there’s industrial and labor relations.
And there’s also the hotel school, which has like a more hospitality spin to business. Um, so I actually ultimately landed on industrial and labor relations because. Multiple different reasons. And I’ll actually get into that later on. So I’ll spare you for now. Um, and then in terms of familiarity, again, like my sister did go, was attending Cornell at the time.
I’d visited many times both to, for her college visits for my college visits. And then also just to like visit her, um, during holidays and stuff like that. Um, and then, so for, in terms of the location and campus environment, as I mentioned, like Cornell is considered a rural location, but there’s actually a really, a lot of things to do outside of campus.
Sometimes you’ll find you don’t even have necessarily time to go off campus because there’s so many activities going. On campus. Like, there’s always like a lot of different events happening. Um, but when you do wanna change a scenery, there’s so much to do. Um, if you want kind of like more of a, kind of like more city vibe, you can go downtown to go to restaurants and shops, or if you’re into nature and hiking, it’s really beautiful.
Like Ithaca is known for its GOs and like nature. Um, so you can always find something to do. And then if you really wanna kind of venture out, there’s like, it’s a very quick drive to a couple of neighboring cities like Buffalo, Syracuse, Rochester. I do. I know a lot of people also go to Canada, which is not too far.
And then if you’re really missing the city, there’s a campus to campus bus that can take you straight to New York City. Um, so finally, well amongst a lot of reasons, another, um, kind of factor that made me decide on Cornell was the opportunities. So one of the motto at Cornell is any person any study. So basically like anything that you’re interested in, you can find at Cornell.
And I found that to be a hundred percent true. Um, if you, first of all, there’s a ton of majors to explore. And if those don’t peak your interests, you can do this thing called college scholars and basically like create your own major. So I thought that was really cool. And then also the alumni network is not only huge, but they’re all willing to like help you in your academics and your professional life.
And I thought that was a really great opportunity. Um, especially as an alumni now, like I, I know that I’m always super excited to help any like any court, current Cornell students, anyone, any prospective Cornell students and also fellow alumni. Okay. So why did I major in industrial labor relations? And maybe before I tell you more about why I should give you a little bit of background of what even is this.
Industrial labor relations is not a very common major. Like you don’t when you think of like different schools and you look at lists, you, you probably won’t find this at many colleges. Um, and what it is is really like the study of labor, of organizations, of sociology, of the world around us and the working world.
So it encapsulates a lot of different fields. Um, and one of the kind of like mottos that ILR used to have while I, while I attended Cornell was called one major endless possibilities. And I’ve really seen this come to life. So, um, a lot of my friends once we’ve graduated have gone off to do a lot of different things.
So HR business. A lot of my friends are going to law school, um, working in social justice. So there’s a lot of opportunities to do a lot of different things. You could even like if you took all the pre-reqs, you could probably even go to med school with this major. So, um, knowing that I was very uncertain about what I wanted to do, I thought this was a really great opportunity for me to just explore and get a sense of, okay, I have all these options.
What’s gonna be the best for me. What am I most interested in? And part of that was also like having the opportunity to have experiences that helped me understand different types of work and jobs. So, oh,
IOR was. Perfect for that. Because as you see here, there’s a lot of them are very, are specific just to ILR students. So I’ve done a number of these listed here. Global service learning is basically where you go to another country and you volunteer and you kind of also take some coursework that’s relevant to your studies.
So I got to go to India for a summer and volunteer at a NGO, um, while also taking classes in global HR, global labor law, and also, um, the, a class on like the local language where I was in India. Um, and then the next one here, high road fellowship. This is, um, a really cool opportunity where you’ll go with a bunch of students to Buffalo, New York and you’ll work at a nonprofit.
So I have the opportunity to work for an education nonprofit, and also, also just kind of build community with other ILR students and other students throughout Cornell. Um, and then finally, Well, not fine. There’s a couple more, but there’s also a credit internship opportunity where you can go work, um, at a, at a company and like actually experience the working world and get credit for it.
So that’s a really cool, um, opportunity there. And then there’s also study abroad exchanges. ILR has specific, um, schools abroad that they’ll exchange students with. And then if you’re interested in research ILR and also Cornell in general has a lot of different opportunities for research. And a lot of them are like, um, very well known nationally as well.
So the list goes on. There was also extracurriculars that played a factor into my decision and majoring in industrial labor relations. So. IR actually has specific organizations that are for the students and anyone is welcome to join, but it’s really based around the topics that IR students are interested in.
Um, so for example, there’s SHERM, which is society for human resource management. I was actually the president of that club and we participated in a case competition and learned more about HR. There’s a minority IR student organization. There’s a sports business society, global affairs club, and honestly, a lot more.
And the great thing about this is that. IR students are considered to really enjoy like leadership opportunities. And so a lot of if they identify that there’s an organization, that’s not on campus already, they’ll just like, go ahead and make their own. And that’s how a lot of these came to be. And so one of the final reasons that I wanted to major in IRS, the flexibility, as I mentioned, I didn’t know what I wanted to do.
I knew I wanted to learn and dial our curriculum. Really lets you do that. So similar to other majors, yes. You have a set of core requirements, but there’s also a ton of elective credits that you’re given and you can fulfill those both within ILR and throughout the rest of Cornell. So if you really wanted to major in ILR, but you were also interested in, for example, Info science, like how, what ere studies, then you could take a class in info science and like supplement your curriculum at the other colleges throughout Cornell.
And then the final thing is the opportunity to pursue minors. So again, like my desire to learn a lot and in many different subjects, this was really helpful because, um, in ILR, a lot of the classes were also cross listed for the minor. So a lot of people get like four minors in addition to their major
And I personally minored in, um, inequality, studies and business. So overall ILR and Cornell just generally had everything that I was looking for in a college. It had the, both like the academic opportunities, the social opportunities, and also the professional opportunities to kind of help me discover what I wanted to do once I graduated.
And, um, Definitely happy to answer any questions at the end as well.
Uh, okay. So real quick, we’re gonna do another poll. So where are you in the college application process? Having started I’m researching schools, I’m working on my essays. I’m getting my application materials together, or if you’re really lucky, I’m almost done. And while we wait for those, um, answers to roll in, can y’all tell us, um, what is something about Cornell that you wish you knew sooner or that you think a prospective student should know?
It’s a bit of a long question, so we might end up coming back to it, but, um, I think one thing would probably be . Coming from New Jersey. I, I know the cold and like the weather and stuff like that. It gets a lot colder. And if it comes than like a lot of other places, so especially if you’re coming from a warm climate, it’s important to like, take that into consideration.
Like if you’re not, you know, if you’re feeling a little intimidated by the cold, you might wanna visit first to make sure that, um, that it’s the right fit for you. But at the same time, I wouldn’t let that deter you. Like, it’s really beautiful in the winter. You could get a nice heavy jacket and you’ll, you’ll probably be okay.
yeah, I definitely have to agree with Meaghan on that. The winters can be a bit harsh, but, um, yeah, you can definitely prepare. Um, another thing I wanted to say, uh, is that there is so much like help available. Like there are office hours all the time and you might not think you need them, but just go, just go anyway, because um, people are so willing to help the teaching staff for a lot of these courses are so great.
Um, and they’re, they’re always willing to help you as much as they can. So take advantage of it. Um, I wish I’d done it earlier. Um, so yeah, that’s definitely my biggest piece of advice. Definitely. And it’s looking like we have 23%, haven’t started 46% of researching schools. So they’re probably wondering what it’s like at Cornell.
Uh, 19% are working on their essays. 11% are getting their application materials together. And 1% the lucky if you are almost done. And you can control the slides.
Great. So, um, my college application process was very similar to Meaghan. I wasn’t really sure. Uh, what I wanted to major in, I wasn’t committed to the idea of any school, any type of school. Um, I knew I was generally interested in stem. I think I originally put my intended major as math at a lot of schools.
Um, and I, I just wasn’t sure what I was looking for. So I also made sure to start early. Um, I went on a lot of college tours. I started spring of my junior year. Um, I was touring local schools and then I started to branch off a little bit. That’s when I visited Cornell. Um, and I just really tried to get a feel of what I was looking for because I really had no, um, sense or direction in any sort of way.
Um, I spent a lot of time researching as well. I focused a lot on, uh, what. Programs different schools had, uh, what like extracurricular opportunities they had, um, as well as just the environment, um, whether it was a more urban school. I realized that I wasn’t really looking for an urban school, um, and learning what you don’t want is definitely as valuable as learning what you do when it comes to, um, the college application process.
Um, I was also lucky enough to have, um, some teachers who provided a lot of guidance on where their former students had gone. Um, I used Naviance. I was constantly looking at those. Scattergrams seeing like where my SAT score was, where my GPA was trying to see, uh, where I could get into. Um, so I kind of, that whole process has really helped me round out my college list.
Um, and then during the.
For Ivy leagues. Um, I did them all through the CommonApp, all regular decision. Again, I wasn’t super married to the idea of any particular school. Um, I also focused a lot on essays. Um, I, my English teacher in 11th grade made us write a personal statement draft, um, which was pretty helpful because, uh, even though I didn’t send it exactly that it was, it definitely helped.
Like narrow down what I wanted to write about. Um, so there were a lot of supplementals too. Um, for every school, there are a couple, every like college within a school. It’s it’s a lot. Um, so I would also definitely say like start brainstorming early. Um, you never know what stories are gonna be helpful.
What experiences colleges are gonna wanna hear about a lot of supplementals are similar, but sometimes they’re a bit quirky. So, um, it’s good to just think ahead of time about what themes and, um, experiences you really want to come across in your application. Um, and then with other Ivy league schools, uh, the only two I were considering were Cornell and Princeton.
I just like the environments of both. Um, obviously ultimately we know where I ended up. Um, Cornell is beautiful. I loved the campus when I toured, I kind of just could feel myself being there. Um, and it’s, it’s naturally beautiful. The architecture is beautiful. It’s and, you know, even on a bad day when I walk around campus, I’m like, well, at least it’s pretty, you know, so it’s, uh, it’s really a great environment to be in.
Um, also the idea of any person, any study, like Meaghan said, it is, it was really important to me because again, I had no idea what I wanted to do and, um, the idea that I could just, uh, sort of explore my different interests and also take classes and things that I never thought I would, um, was very enticing to me.
And luckily I’ve really been able to do that and take advantage of that. Uh, so far. um, there are a lot of research opportunities. I knew that I wanted to get involved in research somehow. Um, but Cornell is a great school for research. There are so many different projects that you can get involved in and, um, getting to know faculty through those experiences has been amazing for me.
Um, and then finally, the network of alumni and peers, um, people are so willing to help. And that was something that really surprised me when I came to Cornell. I was a bit intimidated. Um, but something that you learn quickly is everybody is so like so supportive and willing to help. Um, and that goes for both alumni and fellow students.
And, uh, it’s, it’s great to take advantage of that. They’ll, they’ll help you in your academics, in your career prospects, or even if you just need someone to talk to. Um, I, I figured I would be able to find it here and I have been so far, so that’s been really great. um, and then information science, uh, it is a very unique major.
Um, I had no idea what it was before I took a class in it, and I still struggle to describe it to people when they ask me what it is sometimes, uh, because it is a very interdisciplinary program. Um, it’s essentially techno technology studies with a human centered focus. So, you know, you take coding classes, you, you learn the hard skills, but the classes are more focused on applications.
So instead of taking a pure like algorithms class, you take, uh, data science class or design class, um, and. I appreciated that it was very different from a typical computer science program. I had been considering computer science, um, but I found that computer science was focused more on theory, um, and was a lot more heavily technical, which is great.
But, uh, information science really just filled a niche that I didn’t think could be filled. Um, and so it’s been super interesting. Um, also within the major, you have to pick a concentration, um, and mine is ethics, law and policy. And so that is something that, uh, I didn’t think I would be able to learn so much about, but it has been super interesting and I’ve really been able to align my major to what I’m interested in.
And, um, I found that that’s been super valuable, so that’s something. I couldn’t really find in any other major. And so I knew that information science was the one for me. Um, then the career prospects are great. Um, you can do a lot with an information science degree. Like I said, it’s super interdisciplinary.
So I know people who do internships in business or design, software engineering, project management, law, all those different types of stuff, um, within tech and outside of tech. Um, and so you can really do anything. And that was really valuable to me because again, I, I like to explore. Um, and so you’re not tethered down to any particular type of job.
Um, and then the environment, uh, it’s a super inclusive space. Um, The classes, encourage collaboration. A lot of classes are project based. Um, so you’ll be working with your peers a lot, and there are a lot of extracurricular opportunities to find people who you can relate to. Um, two clubs in particular that I found have been really valuable are URMC, which is Underrepresented Minorities in Computing and Women in Computing at Cornell.
Um, they’re just great communities to be a part of. I mean, there are, there are plenty of other clubs that, you know, find certain niches in tech. There are project teams you can join, but there’s just. It’s a super collaborative space and it’s, it’s nice in an environment that can sometimes feel competitive or, you know, you are having a hard time finding your way.
It’s great to be able to work with your peers and, um, really learn from them as well. Uh, just as much as you would learn from a class. Um, and then also faculty and teaching staff are great. Like I said, they are always willing to help. Um, they’re super interesting, especially the professors are. Um, that’s why I think it’s great to go to office hours because sometimes you can just go to a professor and just ask them about their research or what they do.
And they’re always happy to talk to you and, um, you know, they love talking about their work, um, but they’re also super passionate about your learning. And so, um, there are just always so many resources to get help in information science classes, particularly, um, the teaching staff are always, you know, Pretty well equipped to help you with whatever you need and they try to be as available as possible.
And I really appreciated. So,
sorry. Uh, okay. So that is the end of the presentation portion of the webinar. We hope you found this information helpful, and remember that you can download the side from the link in the handouts tab and this webinar is being recorded. So you will be able to find it on our website. Uh, I believe probably after the webinar, but if not then tomorrow, um, moving on to live Q&A, I’ll read through your questions.
You submitted in the Q&A tab and read them aloud before our panelists give you an answer, uh, as a heads up, if your Q&A tab, isn’t letting you submit questions, just make sure that you join the webinar through the custom links sent to your email and not from a webinar landing page. Also known as the website, because if you join through the website, you won’t get all the features of big markers.
So just make sure you join through that custom link. Also tonight’s audience is a larger crowd, so there will probably be more questions. And we do try to get through as many questions as possible. Um, but especially with larger turnouts, we try and get to them more. Um, Specific questions for the webinar.
So today we’ll be focusing on more Cornell’s specific questions and all general admissions questions can be, um, answered by going to, um, our other webinars on the admissions process or our AO webinars, where you can find out more insider information about the admissions process. And just again also real quick, um, I just wanna explain that with Cornell, we do have multiple colleges.
So even within Cornell, there are differences in terms of admissions and what’s required for each college. So like we have the college of arts and sciences, the college of agriculture and life sciences, college of human ecology, the best one there. Um, I’m pretty sure we have the computer science one, and then there are a bunch of other colleges and then IL ILR is its own school.
Um, so yeah, so if you’re looking. That type of admissions, uh, questions. You do wanna go to the website to find out more information about the specific schools and which majors are offered in each. Okay. Now moving on to live Q&A, uh, so for our first question, just to go over some general admission stuff, a student is asking, is it hard or difficult to get into Cornell?
I would say much like other Ivy leagues it’s competitive. Um, so, you know, they’re gonna be looking at your essays to make sure that, you know, you actually research the school and that you are excited about potentially attending Cornell. They’ll be looking at your transcript, your recommendations, much like other schools.
Um, and there is a lower acceptance rate, but I don’t think that should deter you from applying. Um, you never know, unless you try, uh, I think a lot of students go into applying to Ivy leagues thinking, no, like, I don’t think I’m gonna get in, but if you think positively about it, I think that will probably make your experience a lot better.
Uh, uh, oh yeah, please. Oh, no. Yeah. I was just, I was gonna totally agree with Meaghan there. Um, I think, yeah, in my own personal experience, um, Definitely work at it. Um, you know, put as long as you’re putting your best foot forward, um, you know, that’s the most you can do. So, um, yeah, don’t, don’t focus too much on, um, the difficulty or your perceived difficulty.
Just put the best version of you forward that you can. Yeah. And I would also say like, you know, a lot of the times when you’re thinking about these competitive schools, like, oh, like I need to have a four point, oh, I need to get the best score on the S a T and that’s not necessarily always true. Like, obviously you wanna try your best and do your best academically, but I would say Ivy leagues, especially Cornell really factor in your, your personal essays and how you kind of like frame your story and why you wanna go to Cornell.
So, um, I think that’s another important take. And then also in terms of acceptance rate, it’s a 6% acceptance rate, I believe. Um, and then also keeping that in mind, Cornell does have a very low acceptance rate compared to other schools, but Cornell is also larger school. So it’s able to accept more students.
So while that number is low, the amount of students let into Cornell is typically higher than say Harvard. Uh, so like Harvard’s acceptance rate may be like 10% and they accept 4,000 students. Whereas Cornell’s may be like 6%, but they accept 5,000 students just because Cornell is able to accept more students, but the competitiveness is still there.
Uh, okay. So going on to the next question, kind of going off of that, um, it application process students are asking what is the most important part of the application.
If you Ebreez, if you don’t mind me, Chiming it again. Um, I would say like not to be repetitive, but I really think it’s the essay. Um, and also I think the top two would be essay and extracurriculars essay, because you can really demonstrate that, that you did your research and that you understand Cornell and that you can contribute to the camp Cornell admissions officer, a kind of like, um, view.
Um, and I think those two factors were really important in my kind of like admissions situation for Cornell. Um, especially for industrial labor relations. I really demonstrated my essay. What I’ve done in high school is very aligned to kind of like the coursework and the, uh, experiential and academic opportunities offered at ILR.
And then I think a lot of my extracurriculars really showed that as well. So I think, think of it as like your essay is kind of like telling and then your extracurriculars are showing it’s like show and tell
uh, Ebreez. Did you wanna add anything? Um, no, I was gonna say that exact same thing. Um, the, I feel like, uh, most admissions officers really appreciate just seeing passion. Um, and so I think definitely essays and extracurriculars are the easiest way to show that, um, you know, they like seeing depth and. You, you care a lot about what you wanna do and what you can possibly bring to Cornell with you.
Um, so yeah, definitely make sure to highlight that. Yes. And, um, one of my professors, um, said to me that, um, when Cornell is looking at students, they’re looking for students that are passionate with an edge. So passionate about what you’re doing, that edge can look different for everybody, depending on what you’re doing.
Um, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you took all AP courses throughout high school or that you had a perfect score in the SAT. Um, but passion, the passion part is really what gives you that edge, uh, going on to the next question. Um, uh, okay. Another student is asking, uh, does Cornell give full right scholarships and do they give athletic scholarships?
So I think. Most of the Ivy leagues, if not all of them, um, only give financial aid. So you could get like grants with financial aid, which means you don’t have to pay the money back. There’s also other opportunities to kind of help,
um, supplement financial or like help be with your tuition.
Your age are really helpful.
Uh, yes. Uh, Ebreez. Did you have anything you wanted to add? Um, no. Yeah. I’m not too certain about the athletic scholarships. Uh, but yeah, um, it is possible to go to Cornell for free. Um, but it really depends on your financial situation because it is all, uh, need based and not necessarily merit based. Um, so, you know, there are opportunities to get stipends and, um, funding for different things you might wanna pursue at Cornell, but, uh, yeah, your main tuition will.
Uh, all need based. Yes. And then, um, which I’m gonna call it. Um, yeah, none of the IVs offer, um, merit based, uh, anything merit just gets you in the school, your family’s financial situation is what gets you funding. And then there, uh, like E reset, there are different stipends and, um, opportunities for you. Uh, going on to the next question, students are asking about SAT and ACT requirements.
Um, and, uh, what sort of scores you need to get into the school? Uh, just as a quick thing, um, different colleges, like how I mentioned there are different colleges, um, are some are test optional. Others are not. So I believe the college of agriculture and life science or cows, um, CAS and a few others are completely.
Ignoring the exams, whereas the college of human ecology, the Brook school of public policy, and a few others are ex are requiring scores. So, um, it depends on which school you’re applying to, but if y’all would like to share, um, y’all’s experience with test scores. So, um, I applied to colleges during a time where all schools required SAT scores.
And I know now we live in a different time, so I don’t know if I can add much to that.
Yeah. Um, when I was applying, even though I did graduate in 2020, uh, from high school, I, when I applied, um, they were required everywhere. So it is hard to say, um, I. it kind of speaks to like the holistic application review process. Um, so you know, your SAT score, whether you choose to, if you do choose to submit it, it’s not necessarily a make or break type of thing.
Um, I, I’m not sure about numbers, uh, specific numbers, you know, you wanna do well, obviously. Um, but the application process is definitely holistic and there isn’t any sort of, you know, cut off, um, for any sort of scores. Um, yeah, just to kind of, um, cuz there are a lot of questions about just admissions in general and everybody’s experience is different.
Would y’all mind, uh, sharing, um, like your sort of application, what sort of things you added, what you did throughout the application process? Um, to show them like. To give them different perspectives on how to apply what the Cornell is sort of looking for in a sense. Yeah.
Yeah. Um, so I think similar to what I was saying earlier about, you know, obviously you wanna try your best, you don’t need to have like the top 1% of all the numbers in terms of GPA and SAT, and what IRI said about the application, the kind of like assessment being holistic. I feel like that’s very true. So for example, I didn’t have necessarily the highest SAT score, but again, like in my essay, I made sure to set, you know, pick out very specific things about Cornell that I would do if I attended.
So some examples of that might be saying like, As you’re doing your research, maybe write down a couple things that really interest you. Maybe you really wanna do research with a specific professor because the topic they’re doing research on is super, super interesting to you. So you can kind of like pepper that in, you could say I’m excited to do research with X, Y, Z because well, whatever reason or another example would be, maybe there’s a club that you’re just like, and I’m gonna join this club.
Like be sure to point that out in your essay, be like, um, for, I guess for me, like if I knew I wanted to get into HR as a senior, uh, in high school and HRS human resources, maybe I’d write in my essay. I’m excited to participate in society for human resources management and potentially get a leadership position so that I can help others explore their interests in human resources.
So I think like really tailoring. Your essay to what, um, you might do if you actually go there shows that to the admissions officer like, oh wow. The student like pictured her herself or himself or themself at Cornell. And like, they they’re really demonstrating to me that they care a lot about the outcome of this.
And then, um, other things to add in. I know I keep emphasizing the essay, but honestly, when I was looking at my profile, I think a lot of, you know, other people read my essay to make sure that I was conveying the right message. Um, so I think it always helps to have kind of like a third party, fresh pair of eyes.
Take a look at your essay. Um, I know I’ve gone on and on about the essay, but you McKenzie is like any other aspects of the application that you think, or you walk the attendees through. Uh, other parts of the application. Um, yeah, the essay is probably the most important part. , uh, to be honest, uh, definitely check out our other webinars on other aspects of the application process.
Um, such as for extracurriculars and activities lists. I see a lot of questions asking about how many do you need, what are they looking for? They are not looking most just like every school, pretty much. They aren’t looking for you to be doing NHS or beta club or being the president of everything. It’s really about your levels of commitment and your interest being shown through it and not just doing something for the sake of being able to apply to college, do check out our other webinars.
Again, we do wanna keep this kind of more Cornell specific. Um, but on that end, um, it, for people asking about specific majors. Do go to the website, uh, and check out those specific majors. They do have different alumni and current student networks where you can find out more information about, um, the specific majors, just because we only have three represented here.
And, um, they aren’t being asked about that’s the funny part. Um, but Reese, did you have anything from your admissions process that you’d like to. Um, yeah, I, I actually just saw someone in the Q&A, um, mention the interview, um, which is really interesting. Um, not everybody is offered an interview. It solely depends on if there is an alumni network near where you live.
Um, it’s not necessarily a make or break type of thing, but it’s a great way to humanize yourself in the application process. So if you get offered one, definitely do it. Um, I, my interview, I was super intimidated going in, but we met in like a Panera bread and she was this like lady who graduated in like 1986 and like studied abroad in Russia and like, she was super cool.
Um, so it’s a great way to sort of. First it’s you, you are kind of interviewing them as well. Um, you know, finding out the school’s a good fit for you. Um, but it is a great way to humanize yourself. I think, uh, when you’re putting everything down on paper, it’s a lot of numbers and letters, um, and that can be a bit hard to make yourself pop, um, which is something that the essays are also great for, to, you know, humanize yourself to whoever’s reading your application.
But, um, interviews are great too. So if you get offered one, I would definitely recommend doing it. Yes. And I did have an interview. I did mine over the phone. It was no more than like 10 or 15 minutes. And she was just asking me about what my interest and passions were. It was pretty, pretty lightweight. I had a sheet of paper with everything written on it, about what I was gonna say, and it wasn’t really that serious.
It was very, it was pretty casual, honestly. Yeah. And I would also say the alumni interviewers are typically, and probably all very friendly and nice, and they really wanna get to know the real, you like bring your genuine self share what you’re interested in. And, um, I also agree that like you’re interviewing them, it’s your chance to also ask them questions about, like, what was your experience like, um, like what was your application journey like?
So maybe don’t ask that, but , you will get a better sense of, you know, what, what Cornell is actually like with those conversations. Yes. And we know that the admissions process is overwhelming for parents and students, especially, especially when you’re looking at these Ivy league institutions. Uh, we do recommend, um, signing up for CollegeAdvisor with our team of over 300 former admissions officers and admissions experts, such as our wonderful panelists here, uh, who can help you and are ready to, um, help you navigate the, um, admissions process in one-on-one advising sessions.
Our advisors come from a plethora of schools and have been accepted into a bunch of schools along with our clients. So like all three of us are advisors and all three of us go to Cornell. So we can really provide you that inside look into not only the admissions process for Cornell, but also, um, what it’s like being a student there, what sort of resources and opportunities are available to you and our advisor are usually accepted into at least three.
Eight other schools, depending on the advisor, I was, I applied early decisions. So I can give you insight to that, but I can’t give you an insight to applying to a million schools, but, uh, our advisors have a bunch of different backgrounds and information and interest, and they can really help you. Um, So we do recommend scanning this QR code, um, where you can sign up, um, for a free 15 minute strategy session with an admissions expert, and you get to, um, find out about our different rates and packages.
And what is the best route for you in order to succeed in the admissions process, um, working with CollegeAdvisor, you get a great advisor for one thing, and you also get access to our financial aid team to figure out which schools are gonna be the best option for you as well as our college list team.
So you can really figure out if Cornell is gonna be that perfect school for you, and it should be cuz Cornell is great. Uh, and then you just get help you and your parents get help with navigating the admissions process, working on essays, and really are being able to articulate why you wanna go to Cornell and why you wanna go to all the other schools.
So we do recommend scanning this QR code. It will be on the next slide. So I’m just gonna click through, uh, now back to the Q&A, and we are gonna go into more questions about, um, Personal experiences at Cornell and stuff like that. So far, our first question, a students asking how safe is Cornell’s campus in the surrounding city.
So I would say it’s relatively safe. I personally, as a woman, like didn’t ever feel that I was in danger. And if I did, um, honestly like even late into the night, there will be people like students walking around campus, like coming back and forth from the library, hanging out with friends. Um, so for the most part, there are gonna be other people around.
Um, I think Cornell tries to take safety safety very seriously. So there are, there’s like this blue light system, unless something has changed since I graduated, where if you’re not feeling safe, you can kind of like go to these blue light stations and then someone will come and escort you to wherever you need to go, or just like help you make help you feel a bit safer.
Um, so that. That’s my perspective, but definitely wanna make sure that, uh, you hear Mackenzie and E breeze as well.
Yeah. Um, I would agree. I don’t think I’ve ever necessarily felt unsafe, uh, on campus or really even in Ithaca, uh, you know, surrounding your campus. Um, yeah, the blue light system is still there. Um, it’s great to be with people, uh, just for your own, you know, peace of mind. Um, there’s also a text alert system.
Uh, if anything is going on on campus, um, you’ll get immediate, uh, knowledge of it. And, um, they, they test it a lot, so it definitely works. Um, so yeah, they, they definitely take it super seriously. Um, and it’s a relatively safe area. Uh, just like with any city, there are always gonna be, um, things going on. Uh, it’s an open campus, so it, the campus isn’t barred off.
Some schools do have that, especially if they’re smaller universities, uh, it is in the MI, not in the middle, but, um, it is near a regular residential area. So, um, you will see more than just college students around the campus. I feel it’s pretty safe and I live off campus, so I feel it’s pretty safe. It depends on what areas incidents, incidences, uh, do happen on campus, just like everywhere else.
Um, do look into that, if that is something of a concern, but for the most part, I do feel relatively safe. Um, my freshman year I would run around campus at night. Um, so. Yeah, but no case by case. Uh, so yeah. So going on to the next question, another student’s asking, how long did it take to form solid relationships or connections?
And did it feel overwhelming at first to have to do that? I’m assuming this is with friends and probably professors also,
I think no matter where you go to college, it’s, it’s a new environment. So you’re meeting a ton of new people, a ton of different types of people. So it could be overwhelming if maybe you’re a little bit more introverted, but at the same time, um, it’s also a really cool opportunity cuz one else, are you gonna be in the same place with hundreds of other people, your age, you know, all in the pursuit of your education and learning.
So I think it’s a really kind of cool time in your life. And in terms of the timing. It really depends. It might depend on the dorm that you’re in. It might depend on the different extracurriculars that you participate in. Um, but at the end of the day, every year that you’re at college, you’ll make, you’ll probably meet new people and make new friends.
So for example, I would say like one of my closest friends, I didn’t meet until like my junior year. So that’s in terms of like social life, but, um, in terms of building relationships with kind of like professors and other faculty at Cornell and in general at schools, there’s also an opportunity to kind of like build really close bonds there as well.
I personally was really close to the people that I worked with. I still, I graduated over three years ago. I still text my old boss and like we’re still friends. Um, and yeah, I think, you know, Cornell is a really great place to meet super passionate and, um, Yeah, for super passionate people who care about building those relationships, like they’re excited also to meet new people, make new friends, make new connections.
So whether you go to Cornell or anyone else definitely take advantage of that and know that even if, you know, at times it might get lonely, it’s because you’re in a new place. Everyone goes through that. Like you’re definitely not alone in that.
Yeah. I, uh, I definitely agree. I was going to say, um, just sort of building on that, you know, those first couple of weeks of freshman year can feel a little overwhelming, but something that’s nice is that everybody else is going through the same thing. Um, so everybody is really open to meeting new people.
Um, and again, like Meaghan said, you’re your friendship groups will shift and change. Um, you know, maybe as you get deeper into your major, you’ll be surrounded by different types of people. Um, and with professors, um, They are always they’re, they’re willing to talk. Like they they’re, they’re pretty approachable.
They’re pretty available. Office hours are there for a reason. Um, and yeah, they’re, they’re, they’re some of the most interesting people I’ve ever met. Um, but yeah, it’s, as long as you are able to put yourself out there a little bit, um, it, it, it should be pretty easy to build those relationships. Mm-hmm , uh, I go to college with my best friend from high school.
So I had one coming in and another student from my school goes there. Um, but in terms of making other friends, it gets easier. The more you start to like meet and interact with people and just doing things that you enjoy can really help find other people that also enjoy those things that you have something in common with.
Um, and that, so, yeah, just. You don’t need to like, try and do a bunch of things that you think other people would like. It’s more so about just, um, finding people more naturally, I guess. Um, and then also with the pandemic, my experience or class of 24 is experience is a bit different with meeting people.
So, yeah, and real quick, just for some more technical questions, Cornell does offer only early decision and regular decision. So there is an early action. If you apply early decision, you cannot apply to any other school, early decision, but you can apply to other schools early action, check the fine print for every school that you’re looking at.
If you’re interested in applying early, um, Financial aid for international students is offered. Um, you will have to fill out the CSS profile. Um, domestic students have to fill out CSS and FAFSA and I believe DACA students also, um, there are different opportunities to get a lot of money. I know one of my friends from England is in ROTC, and he, um, got a full scholarship for being in the, um, what was it?
The Marines on campus? Uh, so, uh, yeah, there are different options for different students to get, um, funding, uh, going on to the next question about, um, I am going to just open the floor cuz the webinar is coming to a close, but students are interested in things from housing to your educational experiences, such as courses, um, different clubs and what the social they’re interested in, what the social life is like.
And then also what your academic experience has been like to make it brief breathe.
Yeah. Um, so it’s interesting. So I think when it comes to social life, it’s kind of whatever you make it, um, Cornell’s a big place, uh, and you know, whether you, whether, you know, you wanna find social life in Greek life or, um, you know, through different clubs or whatever, there’s options for everyone, um, I will say, uh, students are pretty social, you know, I think there’s a, there’s definitely a work hard play, hard mentality, uh, sometimes.
So, um, you know, they, students like to let loose, um, but if you are, aren’t super interested in being extremely social, you don’t have to be, it’s really just what you make it and the people you surround yourself with. Um, but there’s, I think there’s options for. Um, and then in terms of academic academic life, um, it’s challenging.
I, you know, I don’t wanna sugar coat. It, it, you know, Cornell has its reputation for a reason. Um, it’s definitely, you know, again, work hard, play hard that work hard is like in size 300 font. Like it’s, um, it’s a big deal. Um, but, uh, it’s, it’s important to find balance and, um, there is a lot of help available, um, but definitely expect to be working hard and working a lot, uh, in your, in your classes, I’d say, yeah, I would agree.
And although. it’s challenging. And like the classes could be rigorous. There’s a lot of resources. So I think Ebreez said that like, you should really take advantage of office hours. Um, I think that’s a hundred percent true and there’s also other resources too. There’s free tutoring, peer tutoring. So other students can help you if they’ve already taken the class, um, there’s academic advising that can help you make sure you’re choosing the right course level for you while also fulfilling your requirements.
Um, there’s also just general, like student advising for anything that you might need help with and they can point you to other resources. So although it’s challenging, I don’t think I, I don’t think it’s a bad challenge. I think it’s a good challenge that will help you grow and learn. Um, And then in terms of the social environment, similarly, like it’s definitely what you make it.
You can either join a ton of clubs and like be busy every single day after class. Or you can kind of do your own thing. Like you can maybe get a job, like a, like a part-time job downtown outside of campus. If you really, really wanted to, you could go hiking every day, if you wanted to. Um, so I think the social life is, and, and this is probably similar at other colleges too.
It’s kind of like what you wanna get out of it. Um, and again, I think there’s so like, although there’s a lot to do off campus, there’s always a ton to do on campus. A lot of organizations and clubs will put on performances. So there’s like dance troops. You can watch your friends dance. There might be some like cultural events where you did get like a bunch of free food, which is always great.
Um, I know there’s a lot of acapella groups. Like sometimes you’ll just be walking around and there’ll be people singing, which is amazing. It’s kind of like pitch. Perfect. Is that the, the name of the movie? um, and, but at the same time, there’s also like very academic focus organizations. Um, there’s clubs where I kind, I think there’s like clubs about like researching.
Um, there’s also like completely random clubs. I think there’s a Cornell cheese club or like a, and also a Cornell chocolate club. So really any interest you might have? I. I don’t wanna guarantee, but I can almost guarantee that you’ll find your group group at Cornell
um, kinda going off of that. Um, which I call it. Uh, we, do you mind if we go over a little bit on time, like just a couple extra minutes to cool. Uh, okay. So yeah, so, um, some of the resources that I found helpful throughout campus were the, um, off campus living house, um, talking to different students is always helpful.
Upperclassmen, usually like to help, um, lower classmen, uh, even before you start. So, like, I reached out to some, um, current students when I was applying and they were able to help me and answer some questions. Um, um, and then, um, Which we call it. They, um, there are different resources to help you with transitioning into school and different offices and like professors are really helpful.
Um, and yeah. And kind of going off of that, what do y’all think was the, um, it breezes, what do you think was the most helpful resource, um, or program that you’ve, um, been able to do at Cornell? Um, that’s a good question. Uh, cause there’s been a lot, um, I think for me it’s definitely been clubs. Um, I think joining extracurriculars, especially as a freshman is just such a great way to meet people and get accustomed to campus.
Um, you know, even. Even if they’re not specifically helping you with certain like logistical issues, it’s just a great way to feel more comfortable. Um, you know, it can be a bit of an isolating experience to, you know, leave home. You know, you don’t know anybody, it’s a completely new place. You might be in a different country, you know, across the country, whatever.
Um, but definitely just like just any, I, I think for me, like joining, um, organizations that were based on things that weren’t academic were super helpful for me, um, just in like meeting people and getting comfortable.
Um, for me, it was actually my part-time job where I found like community and resources. So I worked at the office of career services and. Almost every college at Cornell has their own office of career services that will help you with internships, writing your resume, cover letter, finding full time jobs.
So that’s another really great, um, resource that Cornell has for all students. And I’ve met like some of my closest friends through that job. And then again, as I mentioned before, like my, my boss where I’m still close to, um, and also it’s just like awesome to have all those resources at your fingertips too.
Um, and Cornell make sure that, you know, after you work hard in your academics going go, going to Cornell, they’ll help you, like make sure to find a job once you graduate mm-hmm and since their webinar is coming to close. Is there any final advice you wanna give to students about applying and about navigating, um, Cornell once you get there or while you’re still researching schools?
My last advice would really be, and I know this sounds cheesy, but really be yourself. Your application, cause that’s, what’s gonna make it unique. That’s what’s gonna make you stand out amongst all of the other thousands of people applying. And if you can, at the end of the day, know that you were yourself, when going through the process, I think that that’s something that to be really proud about and it will help you get the outcome that you want.
Yeah. I, I totally agree. I, I feel like, you know, I’ve seen a lot of questions about, you know, what, what do you think helped you get in, um, you know, what can you do to help get in? I, there’s not a straight answer because like Meaghan said, like they wanted see you, they don’t wanna see, you know, um, That you were just trying to do what you think they wanna see.
Um, so yeah. Um, show your passion, like whatever it is that you are passionate about, Cornell would love to see it. Um, and it’s, it’s valuable and it doesn’t matter if you know, it’s not the most like intellectual academic thing you can think of, um, just that passion and that ambition is really important to highlight as opposed to any specific club or score or anything like that.
Mm-hmm and, um, for me, when researching the school, Cornell is a big school and there’s a lot going on. So definitely do take your time when researching, and you don’t need to know everything about Cornell. It’s just like looking for the things that you really feel would help you. So like for me, the college of human ecology is very focused on the human experience and different social aspects to even the most natural science of things, including math, for some reason.
Um, so it’s like, uh, looking for those things at Cornell that really fits you and suits you. Um, even when you do your research, there’s still gonna be some things that you don’t know about. So like for me, I switched majors, so I had to essentially re research, um, what all was available to me. And it’s like, um, speaking with professors and even speaking with the yoga teacher, I had helped me with navigating, um, resources at Cornell and figuring out what I needed to do.
Um, And so, uh, really just take advantage of the different resources, including Cornell’s website. I do wanna emphasize that, cuz there are a lot of very specific questions about what Cornell offers going onto the website. You can find a lot of these answers and figure out about the program. Looking up YouTube videos about day in the life of a Cornell student, um, reaching out to Cornell students, uh, without being too pushy, but just like DMing them on Instagram and.
Meaghan, uh, did have to leave. Um, but reaching out to them, if you have more specific questions about what it’s like, um, those are, what’s really gonna help with figuring out if Cornell is a good fit for you and what all you can gain from this. Um, and then doing your own research and figuring out what you want out of it.
And by figuring out what you want out of Cornell, you can, you’ll be able to articulate that in your essays, which is gonna show them that you’re really interested in coming to the school. Don’t apply to Cornell just because it’s an Ivy league. It is not for everybody. A lot of people transfer out if I’m being completely honest, even after the first semester.
Um, but a lot of people stay because they love it. And a lot of people transfer in because they love it. So really just make sure it’s a good fit for you, especially if you’re applying early decision. And yeah. Um, so yeah, so that is the end of the webinar. Thank you to our wonderful panelists for all this great information about Cornell.
Um, I do wanna remind y’all that we do have other webinars and other panels in different schools, especially for those who are researching schools right now, and trying to build your college list. We do have, um, other Cornell webinar panels as well. If you wanted more perspectives and information about Cornell, and then we also have various blogs on our website about, um, Cornell and how to answer the supplements for Cornell, um, each school that you’re applying to, or yeah, each school that you’re applying to at Cornell is different.
So really do look into what their requirements are because Cornell as a whole has everywhere has different requirements, even within Cornell. It’s a very big school. Um, so yeah, so thank you everyone for coming out tonight and goodnight. Thank you.