College Admissions – Cornell University

Cornell University, located in Ithaca, New York, has the largest undergraduate population out of all the Ivy League Universities. With about 14,000 undergraduates, Cornell nearly triples the undergraduate population of Princeton University. This large population gives Cornell student’s a unique experience, a state-school size population with an Ivy League education.

A bird’s eye view of Cornell’s campus.

With the large number of available spots for students, Cornell also has the highest acceptance rate out of the 8 Ivy League schools. At 16.2%, Cornell still remains very tough to get into, but still easier than Harvard’s 5.9% or Yale’s 6.8%. The average SAT score for an admitted student at Cornell is 1420 for aggregate Reading and Math.

Unique for the Ivy League, Cornell also offers a discounted tuition rate for New York residents, a drop from $43,000 to $27,000. The reason for this “in-state tuition” is that the state of New York heavily funds various programs at Cornell. Unfortunately, even with this discounted tuition, the average student graduates with $18,938 of debt. With a total cost of $60,000, Cornell is a very expensive school. With a large student body population, Cornell does not have the resources to offer financial aid packages as generous as those of her Ivy League counterparts.

Sage Chapel is the final resting place of the university’s founders.

Cornell organizes its colleges in a very decentralized manner. Each of the seven colleges makes its own admissions decisions and academic programs. The only requirements standard for all of the colleges are the ability to pass a swimming test, the completion of two physical education courses, and a writing requirement.

Cornell’s colors are carnelian and white. Their teams refer to themselves as the Big Red with the unofficial mascot being a bear. Cornell generally has strong basketball and strong lacrosse teams. Their basketball teams have won the Ivy League regular season 4 times from 2007-2012, and the lacrosse team won 9 straight Ivy League championships from 2003 to 2011.

One of the footbridges across the gorges near Cornell’s campus.

If you appreciate Cornell’s rural location in beautiful upstate New York and can afford its steep price tag, it presents a great option for prospective undergraduates. With some of the best food a university can offer (such as their delicious Amish ice cream), Cornell is ranked 8th by the Princeton Review for campus food. Cornell also has some of the best research institutions in the nation, providing satisfaction for the palate and the brain.

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