Why I chose Cornell Engineering

A photo of Cornell Engineering student MadelineI specifically chose Cornell Engineering for three reasons: the students, curriculum, and project teams. When I visited Cornell and went on tours, I also attended a physics class. I immediately noticed that the students were passionate about what they were learning. Not only that, but they were eager to support others. Even though the students are all trying to get the best grade as possible, I noticed that they are still willing to go out of their way to help their peers.

This has proven to be true during my time here. The day before my multivariable calculus prelim, I was in office hours struggling with a certain topic. Even though everyone else there was also trying to get their last-minute questions answered, multiple students did not hesitate to explain the topic to me.

Second, I fell in love with the engineering curriculum. Of course, there are the typical engineering distributions and required courses for each major, but Cornell Engineering requires students to take six liberal studies courses. This really appealed to me because Cornell has courses in every field, so I liked how I would be able to take non-STEM courses in virtually any topic I am interested in. Additionally, many majors have STEM electives, which also appealed to me because although I am a Computer Science major, I am very interested in Operations Research and Information Engineering, and this allows me to branch into ORIE without having to take additional courses.

Lastly, the project teams really appealed to me. While majoring in Computer Science, I wanted to be able to gain real-world experience while still pursuing my degree. Project teams are the perfect way to gain this experience. I am currently working on a project where I utilize both my Computer Science and Operations Research skills to study the Ithaca bus system. It has been one of my favorite experiences here so far.

All of these factors seemed particularly unique to Cornell Engineering, which is why I did not hesitate to apply here Early Decision, and this has been the best choice I have made. I have friends who have graduated and gone on to design and build a huge variety of machines such as rockets, particle accelerators, self-driving cars, and surgical robots.

—Madeline, computer science