“Hi 🙂

I got accepted to Cornell as an ED applicant,
and I thought I should leave you a comment..
(because your post seemed so welcoming..)


I just want to say:
guess you graduated… 🙂
or maybe about to??

I’ve never been to Ithaca though I’ve heard countless of times how beautiful Cornell campus is (and how it is out in the nowhere haha)
AND how the food there is excellent..
(one of the reasons I choose Cornell *cough*)

I hope I can find what I’ve been looking for in Cornell
and if you don’t mind my asking-

I was wondering if you can give me any recommendation about.. college life, maybe-
how it is in Cornell..
if they have scholarships
which dorms are the best, and which ones suck.. :)”

First of all Eunsun, congratulations you are about to embark on four years of fun (and learning) at one of the best places around. I really envy you right now and wish I could do it all again myself. Second, great use of emoticons.

No I have no graduated yet – that will come more than soon enough. To answer your questions, as Cornell is an Ivy League school, they do not give any merit or athletic based scholarships. With that said, Cornell awards around 65 % of admitted students financial aid. Cornell has a need blind admission policy and pledges to make tuition affordable for every student. I know that sounds like a public relations announcement but I actually did write that and I can’t think of any other way to put it.

Just keep in mind:

  • Many students are required to maintain a job during the year
  • Many students are required to take out significant student loans
  • Many students are also required to work during the summer

There are plenty of grants (i.e. don’t need to be paid off like loans) available as well for students and I know a number of students who have their entire education taken care of via the financial aid office.

Your other question is about dorms. As an incoming freshman you will live on North Campus, where >99% of freshmen live. You have a lot of options right away and sorting through them can be daunting!

  • You can live in a single – these cost a bit more than living in a double, but do offer typically a bit more space and privacy
  • You can live in a double – this is the most common option. Occasionally there are triples at Cornell, but I have never met anyone who has lived in one (so they are rare.) Doubles are spread throughout a number of dorms on North Campus. In my opinion each dorm has its own positives and negatives. Some students like Dickson since it is old and thus unique, has some interesting and spacious rooms, and is huge. Some like the newer dorms (Mews and Court) since they are more standard, modern looking, and have all the most recent amenities. Some prefer Donlon, which is typically the most “social” dorm. The list goes on and on. Within this set you can request same sex floors, coed floors, and there is even an all girls dorm (Balch.) Usually so many people request doubles that overflow are given singles and charged the double rate, which is nice (although some people get mad about not having a double still!)
  • You can live in a townhouse – this option usually runs around the same rate as a single. The advantages are that townhouses are quite big, there are two doubles on the second floor and a bathroom. On the first floor is a full kitchen, a dining room, and a living room. Some people complain that the townhouses are a bit detached from North campus life and don’t offer the dorm living experience.
  • You can live in a program house – most of these are on North campus so they are cool options for freshmen. Some popular ones are: Just About Music (which is for students who have a passion for music, not just musicians, and they have their own concert space,) Risley Hall for Theatrical Arts (they have their own theatre where they perform plays and shows,) The Language House (where each floor requires you to sign a contract to only speak one foreign language, a great way to pick up a language fluently or hone skills for studying abroad,) and the list goes on and on

There are plenty of other factors that go into your housing decision. Such as filling out a form about your preferences – like, do you study late at night or prefer to sleep? Do you like loud music or mostly silence? You get the idea. Cornell even ensures that a student from each of the seven undergraduate colleges is on each floor, so you get to know some different people.
After freshman year, if you decide to live on campus you can stay in a program house or move to West Campus where upperclassmen live in the brand new dorms that are part of the West Campus Housing Initiative, which is a whole nother story… A lot of students, even as early as sophomore year, will move to Collegetown where I live. There are plenty of nice houses to rent and apartment complexes to live in that offer yet another option for students.

Phew, that was long winded. I hope I answered your questions though somewhere along the way.