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What Colleges Look For in an Applicant Ft. Information from Cornell

In regard to the application process, access and affordability are extremely important to us, as are diversity and inclusion. Our admission process is highly individualized, and we spend lots of time evaluating whether an applicant will be a good fit for the culture and philosophy of our university. The result is an incredibly rich mix of students. Some of the things we look for are character – an applicant’s values are important to Cornell and we encourage applicants to think about if their application essays and recommendations reflect their strongest personal attributes – and also involvement – extracurricular activities, community involvement, etc., what special talents or interests have you developed that you can share with us in your application? Cornellians are very active in both the Cornell and local community in a number of ways. We also have over 1200 student organizations and they include political, advocacy, and community service groups. Cornell awards financial aid on the basis of demonstrated need. We do not offer aid based on academics, athletic ability, or any other talent. Once Cornell determines your financial need, we are committed to meeting that need with options that include various grants, loans, and student employment opportunities. Our students also advocate in regard to financial aid and normally, a group of students travel with a Cornell staff member to Washington, D.C. for the annual Student Aid Advocacy Day, where they speak with Congress members and staff about their experiences with federal financial aid and advocate for continued support of these programs. I hope this information is helpful and wish I could be of more help.

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