Welcome to Cornell!
Congratulations on your acceptance into Cornell…and welcome! We are excited that you will begin your graduate program soon and look forward to working with you.
Our goal is simple: To give you a warm welcome and help you become a member of Cornell communities of scholars and researchers. You will learn about graduate study at Cornell along with expectations and tips for success as a new graduate student. We will introduce you to available resources and support to help you now and during your degree program.
Our orientation does not replace your field orientation program; it supplements it to help you experience the benefits of a larger, interdisciplinary community. Please consult your field’s website for field, college, and program-specific orientation programs. Please also make sure to keep track of your new student to do list.
August 3 – Orientation Hub opens
We will use Cornell’s learning management system, Canvas, to house modules including information, resources, tips, and links to register for our formal program and Transitions workshops. The Orientation Hub went live on August 3rd, a link was sent to all incoming graduate and professional students. Access the Orientation Hub. (An active Cornell NetID is required to access).
August 10 at 10:00 am – Graduate School Welcome
The formal program, presented via Zoom, features Cornell President Martha Pollack, Graduate School Dean Barbara A. Knuth, the Graduate and Professional Student Assembly, and the Graduate School’s associate and assistant deans who will help you understand Cornell’s structure, funding, and much more. When students register, you will be asked to submit questions that you would like to be addressed during the panel discussion section of the program.
August and September – Transitions workshops via Zoom
The series is designed exclusively for first-year graduate and professional students and covers topics like understanding doctoral funding, mentoring, time management, and much more. View the Transitions page for more information.
August 18, 19, 20 from 12:30-2:00 pm – The Summer Success Symposium
This orientation event is for new and continuing M.S./Ph.D. and Ph.D. students from across all graduate fields who identify as belonging to groups historically underrepresented in graduate education.
Additional information available in the modules:
- Pre-arrival and arrival information, including Cornell’s COVID-19 testing and behavioral compact.
- COVID-19 health information.
- Not Anymore, a video-based program required for all graduate and professional students, with critical information about sexual harassment, sexual assault, dating and domestic violence, stalking, gender discrimination, and bystander intervention options.
- Important Cornell offices and resources.
- Online social events sponsored by the Big Red Barn Graduate and Professional Student Center.
Graduate School Announcements posts Monday nights (EDT)
All new students will begin receiving the weekly Graduate School Announcements. This newsletter, sent to current students, contains news, updates, deadlines, policies, resources, funding, programs, and events for Graduate School students.
- Cornell University COVID-19 Information
- Graduate School COVID-19 Information
- International Student FAQs
Keeping students, faculty, and staff safe
To maintain a safe, educational, and vibrant learning environment for all members of our Cornell community, all students in Ithaca will be required to abide by a campus behavioral compact, which will be provided to you in the coming weeks.
Plans for a robust virus screening program will be provided over the coming weeks. Compliance will be an absolute requirement for all students returning to campus for the fall, whether living in on-campus housing or in the local Ithaca community.
Look for more information in our weekly Announcements.
Join the Community Read
Discuss National Book Award winner Ibram X. Kendi’s book
Current Cornell students interested in participating in the community book read of National Book Award winner Ibram X. Kendi’s “How to Be an Antiracist” have free access to the ebook through Canvas, Cornell’s learning management system.
Free ebook access is available to active enrolled Cornell students, including incoming first-year and transfer students.
Find Your Community
Knowing where to look can give you a head start
With 23,600 students, Cornell is large. This year, with students studying and researching in a hybrid learning environment, it may be especially hard to meet new people. The programs, organizations, and resources below are planning events designed to bring people together.
- Big Red Barn Graduate and Professional Student Center. The Barn is the heart of the graduate and professional community with numerous virtual events scheduled throughout the fall semester.
- Student Organizations. With over 900 student groups, find a group that corresponds to your personal or professional interests. Several upcoming events are listed below.
- Graduate and Professional Student Assembly (GPSA). Cornell’s system of governance includes an active student component. Becoming part of the GPSA is a great way to meet people.
- Graduate Student and Professional Student Diversity Council. Help advance a sense of community, professional excellence, and a climate of inclusion for all graduate and professional students, but especially for those from marginalized communities and backgrounds historically underrepresented in the academy.
- Student Communities. Review our short list of student groups and links to other places to find community.
Upcoming Student-Organized Events
- Bienvenidos RSVP: LGSC Welcomes you!
July 30 at 5:00 pm (EDT)
The Latinx Graduate Student Coalition (LGSC) is a student organization for all Latinx graduate and professional students at Cornell. This event is focused on providing support, information and resources, and connecting incoming students with the LGSC community.
FiGLI New Student Meet-and-Greet
August 4, 2020 from 12:00-1:30 pm (EDT)
The First Generation and Low Income Graduate Student Organization (FiGLI) and the Graduate School Office of Inclusion and Student Engagement (OISE) invite you to attend the FiGLI New Student Meet-and-Greet! All graduate students who identify as first-generation students and/or low-income (and allies) are welcome to attend.
Coffee Hour with QGrads
August 10, 2020 from 12:00-1:30 pm (EDT)
Join the executive board and current members of QGrads (Cornell’s LGBTQIA+ Graduate Student Association) to discuss queer graduate student life at Cornell! Incoming and current students are welcome. We look forward to meeting you and answering any questions you have!
If you’re interested in hearing about additional summer events (all open to incoming students) and community news, we welcome you to sign up for our listserv.
If you have any questions, please contact Janna Lamey, Assistant Dean for Graduate Student Life (607-255-5184 or firstname.lastname@example.org).