To Do List
Items are required unless noted otherwise. Expand an item for more detail.
First Things First
Submit Enrollment Deposit
Submit your enrollment response and deposit by May 1 to reserve your place in the incoming class.
Enrollment deposit status updates every 2 business days.
Submit by May 1
Visit Reply to Admission Offer for instructions.
Activate NetID & Cornell Email Address
Your Cornell NetID is your key to secure online services at Cornell. You will need it to view and pay your bursar (tuition) bill, add and drop courses, check financial aid awards and more. Your Cornell email address will be used for official university announcements.
Beginning April 3, once the university processes your enrollment deposit, you will receive an email (at your admissions email address) that your NetID was created and what to expect next. You are expected to activate your NetID and Cornell email account immediately.
For more information, visit NetID & Email.
Memorize Your Cornell ID #
All new students must memorize their 7 digit Cornell ID #.
This is your unique personal identifier at Cornell. It will be printed on your Cornell ID card. You will be required to use it for:
- paying your bill
- security verifications and more.
Your Cornell ID # is different than your Cornell NetID.
Your NetID consists of your initials plus a number. You use it, along with a password, to obtain secure access to online services at Cornell.
You will see your Cornell ID # in the To Do List only when you are able to sign in with your NetID and password.
Housing Application Process
All first-year students are guaranteed on-campus housing if applications are submitted by May 6. Those received after May 6 are processed in the order in which they are received.
You will receive notification in mid-June from the Housing and Dining Contracts Office with your housing assignment and contract signing instructions. Make sure you have activated your NetID and Cornell email address so that you don't miss out on housing information.
If you have an accessible housing request due to a disability, register with Student Disability Services (SDS) by the May 11 deadline. Review detailed information on the SDS website.
Access the housing application at housing.cornell.edu.
- Submit housing application by May 6
- Review housing assignment; available mid-June
- Sign housing contract online (NetID required)
Dining/Meal Plan Enrollment
Review your dining options at dining.cornell.edu and enroll in a plan when you receive your housing assignment or by July 1.
In addition to the traditional meal plans, be sure to check out City Bucks - a pre-paid declining balance account accessed through your Cornell Student ID Card that eliminates the need to carry cash at many off-campus locations.
- Review dining options at dining.cornell.edu
- Sign up for meal plan when you receive your housing assignment or by July 1
Student ID Card Request Form
You are required to submit a photo online for your Student ID Card.
Depending on your relationship to the university and the services that you sign up for, your ID card can also be used as an electronic door key and to access a variety of functions and facilities on campus, including athletic events, CornellCard charges, dining units, fitness centers, libraries, and transportation services.
Access form: Student ID Card Request
Submit by July 15
International Students: Additional Requirements
If you are not a United States citizen or permanent resident, you may need to obtain F1 student visa status in order to study at Cornell.
If you are coming to Cornell as an undergraduate, please see the admitted student website for international undergraduate students. Complete the requirements to get your F1 certificate of eligibility (called an “I-20”) and F1 entry visa stamp as soon as possible.
All others, please read the information on getting student visa status for newly accepted international students. Complete the requirements to get your F1 certificate of eligibility (called an "I-20") and F1 entry visa stamp as soon as possible.
Health & Community
This process involves completion of a number of forms, and documentation of required immunizations; it can take several weeks to complete.
Plan ahead to meet the June 15 deadline (and avoid a late fee and registration delay).
Your required forms will remain on your myCornellHealth (patient portal) home page until you submit them.
Your status on the To Do List will remain "Incomplete" until your New Student Immunizations and TB Screening form and documentation have been:
- submitted by you; then
- reviewed and approved by Cornell Health (due to heavy volume, allow up to 3 weeks)
If we discover problems with any of your forms or submissions, we will send you a secure message through myCornellHealth.
Access instructions: Health Requirements for New Students
- Review instructions NOW
- Schedule an appointment with your health care provider
- Obtain official immunization records
- Log in to myCornellHealth to complete all forms and upload all required information
- Follow up on any secure message email alerts from Cornell Health
- Check updated compliance status here
Students with disabilities are encouraged to self-identify with Student Disability Services (SDS) and request access accommodations and services as needed. Students with a broad range of conditions such as, medical and mental health conditions, learning disabilities, ADHD, Autism Spectrum Disorders and sensory disabilities use our services to address their access needs. Appropriate documentation of the disability must also be submitted. Find out more about eligibility and documentation for disability services.
- Accessible Housing Requests: First-year student requests and supporting documentation must be submitted to SDS by May 11. Students who miss this deadline and qualify for accessible housing may be placed on a waiting list.
- Academic and other access requests: To allow adequate time to determine eligibility for disability services and accommodations, submit your request and supporting documentation by June 15. Some disability services require advance planning to have in place at the start of the semester.
Call SDS at (607) 254-4545 or visit our website: sds.cornell.edu. Upload your disability documentation when you submit your application or fax it to (607) 255-1562.
Parent/Guardian Address Request Form
In order for the university to provide the most up-to-date information to your parents/guardians about Cornell, including invitations to Cornell events and programs, please fill out this form as completely as possible.
Access form: Parent/Guardian Address Request
Submit by July 15
Fitness Centers Enrollment Form
Cornell Fitness Centers offer fun, stress-relieving, safe, convenient, and enjoyable exercise programs with five centers located around campus, more than 90 group exercise classes each week, and an extensive variety of cardio and weight equipment.
Access form: Fitness Centers Enrollment
Submit by July 15
Spiritual Life at Cornell Form
Cornell United Religious Work (CURW) coordinates the programs of the major religious traditions that sponsor communities at Cornell. The member groups of CURW sponsor services, social and cultural events and lectures. We are available to counsel you and your family in times of crisis.
Access form: Spiritual Life at Cornell
Submit by July 15
Get a Big Red Sports Pass
The free Big Red Sports Pass gives you access to all home athletic contests (except men's ice hockey) at no cost. Sign up for the 2018-19 pass beginning July 1. Once you sign up, the service activates on your Cornell ID Card.
Available July 1
All new students must complete AlcoholEdu, an online, interactive alcohol education course. Even if you are among the many Cornellians who do not drink alcohol, the information provided in the program will be valuable.
Check back in July for instructions for completing AlcoholEdu. The deadline for completion is August 17.
ALL STUDENTS are required to have adequate health insurance. You will be automatically enrolled in Cornell's Student Health Plan (SHP), unless you waive your enrollment or are eligible for SHP-Medicaid (see below). The premium will be reflected on your July Bursar bill, and your coverage will begin August 1.
- If you have other insurance that meets Cornell's requirements and you do not want to stay enrolled in SHP, you may file an online waiver application by July 31. (Ithaca students: If your waiver application is approved, you will pay a student health fee instead of the SHP premium.
- Some Ithaca students may be eligible for Cornell's Student Health Plan-Medicaid (SHP-M). These students are exempt from the SHP enrollment/waiver process and the health fee.
You do not need to do anything about this item because Cornell requires all international students to be covered by SHP.
DENTAL & VISION PLANS (optional):
All students are eligible to enroll in Cornell's dental and vision plans. The enrollment deadline is September 30.
Steps for domestic students only
- Beginning June 20, go to studenthealthbenefits.cornell.edu to learn about SHP, and/or to submit a waiver application.
- SHP waiver deadline: July 31
- Deadline to enroll in optional dental/vision plans: September 30
Gorge Safety Video
Ithaca's gorges are beautiful, but dangerous, too. Please take 4 minutes to watch this video on safe and responsible use of the gorges. Two gorges run through the Cornell campus. While the water in the creeks is alluring, it is deceptively treacherous. In this video, you will learn about the dangers you can't see, and ways to safely explore and enjoy the gorges and natural areas at Cornell and nearby.
Available July 16
Update Emergency Contact
Students are required to provide emergency contact information. Keep this and all addresses and phone numbers including Emergency Mass Notification information complete – and current – in the student information system. This will ensure you receive critical information and alerts.
After activating NetID
Sign in to Student Essentials and click on "Update Emergency Contacts" to complete this item.
If your address changes after you've applied, but before you activate your NetID
Log in to Cornell's application self-service system to report an address change.
Courses & Colleges
College Specific Items
Your college may have specific tasks for you to complete during the summer in addition to enrollment July 9-17. Please activate and check your Cornell email regularly and make sure that your postal mailing address is current on Student Essentials so that you don't miss any important communications.
For more information, visit College & School Links
Sign in for your college.
What is it like to come to Cornell? Stories from sophomores, juniors & seniors
See how current and former students describe their experience coming to college. Then share your thoughts and feelings about coming to Cornell. Your thoughts will help give future students a better idea of what to expect, helping to improve their transition. Please set aside 30 minutes to do this.
Available June 1.
Please have your secondary school counselor access the Final Report form at: www.commonapp.org or www.universalcollegeapp.com and return the completed form and your final high school transcript by July 15.
Final transcripts will not be considered "official" and fulfill the transcript requirement unless they are sent directly from your high school. If mailing your documents, please have your school send them to the Processing Center, 349 Pine Tree Road, Ithaca, NY 14850.
If you have questions about your final report, please contact the Undergraduate Admissions Office: firstname.lastname@example.org or (607) 255-5241.
Enroll in Fall Courses
You will enroll in fall semester courses July 9-17. After July 5, check your appointment window in Student Center (NetID required). Before your appointment window begins, familiarize yourself with the process by reviewing the instructions from your college (most colleges will send out information by late June) and reading the general Course Enrollment information on this site.
For more information, visit Creating Your Schedule.
Cornell Essentials: The Cheating Video
Please set aside 15 minutes to watch Cheating, a short video in which Cornell students, professors, and alumni talk candidly, poignantly, and sometimes even humorously about student cheating at Cornell. They discuss real-life ethical dilemmas that new students might face; share their perspectives on why students cheat; discuss the reasons why students shouldn’t cheat; and give tips on how students can avoid the predicaments that lead to cheating.
Available June 1
Sign up for a Swim Test Time or Beginning Swimming
Passing the swim test is a requirement for graduation. If you know how to swim, sign up in August, then complete the test during Orientation or shortly after. Select a time that will not conflict with other required orientation events. If you cannot swim or do not feel confident about your swimming skills, enroll in Beginning Swimming (PE 1100) during course enrollment.
Visit Swim Test Sign-up to enroll in a swim test time or learn more about the test. Sign-up opens August 1, and will be available until August 24, the last day the swim test is offered until the make-up tests in November.
Bursar Disclosure Statement Form
Read the Initial Disclosure Statement, the Retail Installment Agreement and the important information regarding your rights to dispute billing errors on this form. When you submit the statement, a copy will be sent to your email address for your records.
Access form: Bursar Disclosure Statement
Submit by July 15
The CornellCard account is a service that allows you to make purchases by presenting your Cornell ID card. This service can help you manage your day-to-day expenses without having to carry large amounts of cash.
Access form: Apply for CornellCard (NetID required)
Submit by July 15
Cornell Installment Plan Enrollment
The Cornell Installment Plan (CIP), also known as the Tuition Pay Plan, is administered by HigherOne/Cashnet. CIP allows you to pay your tuition in interest-free increments over a 5 month period. Using the installment plan may help you borrow less and even your cash flow.
For more information or to enroll in CIP, visit Cornell Installment Plan.
The status of this item will not be updated on your To Do List until July.
Submit by August 7
Enroll in Direct Deposit
Bursar student refunds and university stipends (financial aid) are issued electronically. Students must enter their banking information and manage their account through the secure Cornell Nelnet.
Submit by August 7
CASHNet - Paying Your Tuition Bill
Bursar bills are electronic, via CASHNet, paper bills will not be sent.
- Activate your Cornell NetID and email address.
- CASHNet is Cornell's e-billing system. Incoming students must grant access to other users/payers to view or pay the tuition bill.
- Pay your tuition bill by August 7. The August e-bill includes fall semester tuition and fees and will be available via CASHNet on July 13.
For more information including a complete bill schedule, visit the Bursar website.
Before You Arrive & Orientation
Review Orientation Guide and App
The Orientation Guide and Orientation App will be available to download in late July. This essential information contains all of the university's orientation events so that you can get acquainted with Cornell.
Read the guide/review the app and make plans for Orientation, including attending required college and university events, plus all of the amazing optional events that interest you.
A hard copy of the guide will be distributed during Cornell Orientation (August 17-22, 2018).
Transit Access, Vehicle Registration, Parking Permits, Bicycle Registration
Transit Access: New-to-Cornell students on the Ithaca campus automatically receive free, unlimited-ride TCAT bus privileges until August 31, 2019. No need to submit a form. Students must use their Cornell Student ID Card at the fare box and remain registered to access this privilege.
Vehicle Registration and/or Parking Permits: Parking on the Ithaca campus is restricted to permit or payment. Beginning August 1, students can register their vehicle (required; free) and purchase a parking permit (optional; price varies) for their residential area or a commuter lot prior to their arrival.
Bikes: Bicycle registration (free) is mandatory if you ride or store a bike on the Ithaca campus.
Complete New Student Survey
All new first-year students are asked to complete the New Student Survey, which will be available July 27. This survey takes approximately 10 minutes to complete.
Create and Print Your Unloading Permit for Move-In Day
Beginning August 1 you will be able to create your Unloading Permit for Move-In Day. All new students living on campus move in on Friday, August 17.
All new students are given a move-in time for Opening Day, and must display a corresponding unloading permit on your vehicle's dashboard. Check your move-in time and learn more about what you can bring to campus, on the Move-In Day page.
Check Registration Status & Schedule
Beginning August 14, the university will update your registration status and fall semester schedule on Student Essentials.
Sign in to Student Essentials (NetID required) to view your registration status. If you are registered, you will see a green check mark. The absence of a green check mark means you have a hold that is preventing registration. For more information, including registration deadlines, go to courses.cornell.edu and scroll down to "University Registration" under the Students section in General Information.
Student ID Card Pick Up
Pick up your Student ID Card atNew Student Check-In
Friday August 17, between 8:00 am and 4:00 pm
If you are an early arrival and you will be living in the residence hall prior to August 17, you may receive your ID card earlier.
Attend New Student Check-In Event
All new students are required to attend this event in Barton Hall on Friday, August 17 between 8:00 am and 4:00 pm. Staff from many university departments will be providing information and answering questions. Expect to spend 45 minutes at the event. Families are welcome.
Find Barton Hall on the Cornell University map.