Prospective Applicants

February 15, 2017, was the final deadline for entering Early Decision students to apply for financial aid.

June 15, 2017, is the final deadline for entering Regular Decision students to apply for financial aid.

After the final deadline, students will not be eligible to apply for Cornell need-based financial aid for the 2017-18 academic year.

Below are the financial aid application requirements for undergraduate applicants who are applying as U.S. citizens or eligible non-citizens. If you are going to attend one of the professional schools (Johnson, Law or Vet), please contact their financial aid office directly to discuss your options.

If you are an international applicant, or an undocumented applicant residing in the U.S. without DACA status, click here. If you are an applicant with DACA status, click here.

Students wishing to apply for federal financial aid only (no institutional grant consideration) should complete the FAFSA and contact us at to indicate that you wish to apply only for federal financial aid. This email must come from the student directly; parents are not able to make this request.


Spring Transfer 2017:               October 15, 2016 (final deadline 2/1/17)

Early Decision 2017-18:            November 22, 2016 (final deadline 2/15/17)

Regular Decision 2017-18:       February 15, 2017

Fall Transfer 2017:                     March 15, 2017

International applicants should refer to deadlines here.

Application Requirements:

Click each step below to see more information.


Step 1: Monitor your Cornell To Do List

Applicants have a Cornell To Do List. We communicate our aid application requirements through the Cornell To Do List. Please reference this regularly to see that everything is complete. Items will disappear once they are completed in your financial aid file.


Step 2: Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

Spring Transfer 2017 applicants should complete the 2016-17 FAFSA. All other applicants should complete the 2017-18 FAFSA.

The 2017-18 FAFSA will be available beginning on October 1, 2016.

The FAFSA determines your eligibility for the low-interest Federal Direct Loan as well as federal and state grants. Note that the FAFSA Expected Family Contribution may be different from the Cornell Family Contribution.

  • FAFSA is found at
  • Cornell’s FAFSA code is 002711
  • (For NY residents) HESC Endowed code: 0175, HESC State code: 0174
  • If you are selected for federal verification when you complete your FAFSA, complete the IDOC verification worksheet and submit with your IDOC materials


Step 3: Complete the CSS PROFILE (and Noncustodial PROFILE, if applicable)

Spring Transfer 2017 applicants should complete the 2016-17 CSS PROFILE. All other applicants should complete the 2017-18 CSS PROFILE.

The 2017-18 CSS PROFILE and Noncustodial Parent PROFILE will be available beginning on October 1, 2016.

This, along with your FAFSA information, will help determine your eligibility for Cornell student aid funds.

If the whereabouts of your noncustodial parent are unknown, or if you have extenuating circumstances regarding your situation, complete the Noncustodial Parent Waiver Petition.


Step 4: Prepare and submit your IDOC materials

Spring Transfer 2017 applicants should submit materials to IDOC in the 2016-17 year. All other applicants should submit materials to IDOC in the 2017-18 year.

IDOC is a service that processes aid application materials. Use the IDOC upload for fastest service and DO NOT submit duplicate copies of materials to Cornell.

IDOC will be available beginning on November 1, 2016.

You will only be able to submit materials to IDOC after you have completed your FAFSA and received an email from the College Board with IDOC submission instructions.

Log in to, complete the requested family information, and follow submission instructions. The following materials should be submitted to IDOC:

  • Federal Verification Documents, while listed as a requirement on IDOC, should be submitted with IDOC materials ONLY IF the student was selected for federal verification following completion of the FAFSA.
  • 2015 federal tax return(s) for custodial parent(s) and student
    If you (the student) or your parent(s) did not file a federal tax return for 2015, complete the IDOC non-filing statement for students or IDOC non-filing statement for parents and submit with W2s or 1099s. Both forms are available through the IDOC Dashboard. Parents earning income outside the US will complete the International IDOC non-filing statement and submit with W2s, 1099s, or a statement from the employer(s).
  • 2015 federal tax return(s) for noncustodial parent(s), if parents are divorced, separated, or were never married
    • If the noncustodial parent is re-married, the current spouse’s income information is also required
    • Noncustodial parent taxes may be submitted to Cornell (if not included with the IDOC materials)

Tax Return Requirements:

  • Must be copies of returns actually filed with the IRS
  • Must include all schedules, such as A, B, C, C-EZ, E, and/or F
  • Must include all W2 forms
  • Must include business returns: if either of your parents has an interest in a business or farm, submit the business tax return for each business and/or farm. In the U.S., this refers to the full 1065 Partnership Return, 1120S Corporate Return, and 1120 Corporate Return, along with K-1 Statements
  • Must include trust or estate documents: if you or your parents are the beneficiary of an estate or trust, submit the full Trust Tax Return and a letter explaining the contents of the trust or estate, value, and accessibility
  • Foreign tax filers: please provide us with translated documentation verifying your parents’ annual income for the most recently completed tax year (or the International Parent Non-Filer Statement)


Step 5: Documentation of Permanent Residency (if applicable)

If you are a non-US citizen but have permanent residency or are an eligible non-citizen:

Eligible non-citizens must provide documentation of permanent residency or citizenship status.  Acceptable forms of original documentation include:

  • Alien Registration Card (I-551)


  • Arrival/Departure Record (I-94) with all endorsements and temporary I-155 stamp that has not expired and I797 (Notice of Action) showing that you have applied for permanent residency

If you are unable to present your citizenship documentation to our office in person, please complete the Citizenship Affidavit, have it notarized, and return it with a copy of your citizenship documentation. If you are an eligible non-citizen, be sure that your FAFSA indicates that you are an eligible non-citizen and has your Alien Registration Number.

When applicable, documentation will be sent to USCIS (US Citizenship and Immigration Services) for review and determination of eligibility for federal student aid.



Why is our deadline important?

We want you to have all the information you need before making the choice to attend Cornell. Meeting the aid application deadline will ensure that your financial aid award is available when you receive your admissions decision. If you do not apply by our stated deadline, your award may be delayed.


Do you have further questions?

Try our Ask Ezra knowledge database. Ezra knows a lot about financial aid and student employment!