At Cornell, Indigenous students of all backgrounds are supported with a constellation of unique resources. Cornell University is a vibrant collaborative community. You belong here.

The American Indian and Indigenous Studies Program (AIISP) works with Cornell Admissions to open doors to promising futures for Haudenosaunee students, on whose homelands Cornell stands, and other North American Indian and global Indigenous students. AIISP collaborates closely with the Undergraduate Admissions Office's Diversity Outreach & Strategic Partnerships Team
Please reach out to Wayva Waterman Lyons (Onoñda’gegá’/Onondaga), Assistant Director of Financial Aid and Admissions, or aiisp [at] to receive professional advice on the ins and outs of the application process.

What academic level will you be joining us at?

Students gather in the Akwe:kon Great Room.

Discover what makes Cornell so special with an in-person or virtual visit. Nestled in the Finger Lakes region of Upstate New York, Cornell offers a world-class education in a vibrant college town surrounded by natural beauty. Find your community with our Indigenous-led undergraduate student organizations.

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Graduate and professional students arrive from across the globe to pursue research and scholarship in more than 100 fields at Cornell. Connect with AIIS staff to learn about adding the American Indian and Indigenous Studies Graduate Minor to your Cornell experience. See the "Academics & Research" tab for more details.

Students are seated around a table. A student with glasses and a dark shirt holds the microphone talking to the group.

Undergraduate students transfer to Cornell for many reasons. Whether your academic interests have changed, or you are looking to continue your education after completing a two-year degree, make Cornell the next step on your journey. Students are considered transfer applicants if they have completed a high school degree (or equivalent), and earned at least 12 semester hours of college credit after completing high school.

Costs & Affordability - More Affordable Than You Might Think

The cost for college may be one of your family's greatest concerns about going to college. You may be surprised at just how affordable completing a Cornell degree can be. We are committed to making a Cornell education affordable to every student regardless of economic circumstances. We want you to graduate with little to no debt, ready to change your field. 

Cornell meets eligible undergraduate students' full demonstrated financial need (total estimated cost of attendance minus expected family contribution) with a package of aid that includes Cornell grants, Pell grants or NY State grants (when eligible), and annual work-study award, and zero or low student loans, depending on total family income. Families with a total 

  • A Cornell education is a worthy investment. 
  • Cornell practices need-blind admissions for U.S. citizens and eligible non-citizens, which means your ability to pay is not factored into the admissions process
  • Cornell guarantees that any family with a total income of up to $75,000 and typical assets of this income range (including primary home equity), will have a $0 expected family contribution and will receive aid offers that include only grant and work-study only - no parent contribution and no student loans

"Cornell actually ended up costing less than the state university closest to me, even if I lived at home to save money. Given the strength of Cornell academically, and the great financial aid, it was an easy choice."

~Carl (Sault Ste. Marie Chippewa)- Class of 2020 - Mechanical Engineering Major

Contact Wayva Waterman Lyons (Onondaga), Assistant Director of Financial Aid & Admissions & Coordinator of Indigenous Student Outreach at wl685 [at] (wl685[at]cornell[dot]edu) with any questions about admissions or Financial Aid options. 



  • Cost to Attend - Cornell’s estimated cost of attendance includes costs billed by the university (such as tuition and fees), and non-billed costs (such as books and personal expenses) a typical, full-time student may encounter in a traditional academic year – fall and spring semesters (such as books, course materials, personal expenses, and transportation). The estimated cost of attendance, sometimes called the “sticker price,” is not the price an eligible financial aid applicant pays to attend Cornell. Rather, it is an estimate of the total costs to attend before financial aid is applied.
  • Types of Aid - Financial aid solutions tailored to your family's needs. 
  • Apply for Aid - We understand that financial aid options can be complicated and that no two families’ financial situations are the same. The Financial Aid Office is available to provide guidance and support.
  • Scholarships & Fellowships - The AIISP office curates and promotes a monthly list of scholarships available at a national level for students at all levels who identify as Native American, American Indian, Indigenous, Alaskan Native, Pacific Islander, and Native Hawaiian. Subscribe to our student newsletter for more information, or reach out to our staff. Connect with our Student Support Specialist if you need help with any scholarship application. We also recommend reviewing Native Forward Scholars Fund for a curated list of active and available scholarships.
  • Academic Funding through AIISP - The American Indian and Indigenous Studies Program offers funding to support undergraduate and graduate student success. Examples of how this funding can be used include academic research, professional development, skill enhancement, travel for conference presentations, research/coursework travel, service projects that address Indigenous needs, fieldwork, workshop participation, and data needs. Other research/academic expenses include things such as application fees, and support for high-impact unpaid or low-pay internships.