Board of Trustees approves 2022 budget parameters

The Cornell Board of Trustees has approved parameters for the university’s 2022-23 budget, including tuition rates for the coming academic year.

Tuition rates for undergraduates will rise between 3.6 and 3.9%, while grant-based financial aid is expected to increase by 8% – a record $363 million investment to ensure that a Cornell education remains accessible to students from every background.

Grant funding, which students do not need to repay, has more than tripled over the past 20 years, making Cornell more affordable for students receiving financial aid today than it was two decades ago. Approximately half of the undergraduate student body receives Cornell grant-based aid, which also covers room, board and incidental expenses. The median Cornell grant in 2021 was $47,563.

“Cornell is committed to ensuring that we remain accessible to students from all socioeconomic backgrounds,” said President Martha E. Pollack. “We continue to invest in financial aid as a key part of our foundational commitment to inclusion, and as an essential component of maintaining our academic excellence.”

Cornell has also made affordability a central element of its ambitious $5 billion “To Do the Greatest Good” campaign. The campaign seeks to increase the number of aid-eligible undergraduates by 1,000, reduce undergraduates’ average borrowing, and exempt those with limited financial resources from a summer work earnings requirement, allowing more students the freedom to pursue unpaid research or other pre-professional opportunities.

“These investments ensure that we continue to make Cornell’s academic excellence and unparalleled student experience available to ‘any person,’” said Provost Michael Kotlikoff.

Undergraduate tuition for 2022-23 will be $62,456, an increase of 3.6%, or $2,170, for unaided out-of-state students attending any of Cornell’s colleges, and for unaided New York state residents attending the endowed colleges: the College of Architecture, Art and Planning; the College of Arts and Sciences; the Cornell SC Johnson College of Business; and the College of Engineering.

For unaided undergraduate New York state residents attending contract colleges – the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, the College of Human Ecology and the School of Industrial and Labor Relations – tuition will be $41,958, an increase of 3.9%, or $1,576.

All Cornell undergraduates are guaranteed need-based financial aid that covers tuition, housing and dining, and other costs of attendance. For most students with need, the rise in Cornell grants will offset any increase in costs, said Jonathan Burdick, vice provost for enrollment.

“The increases in grant-based aid should cover any added costs of attendance – housing and dining as well as tuition and fees – for U.S. students whose financial circumstances are unchanged from last year,” Burdick said.

The overall average increase for housing and dining for the 2022-23 academic year is 3.9%. This includes a 4.7%, or $464 increase in the fee for housing, to $10,426; and a 2.75%, or $178 increase for dining, to $6,612. With the increased residential capacity offered by the North Campus Residential Expansion project, beginning fall 2022 all first- and second-year students will be required to live on campus and have meal plans.

Tuition for master’s degrees will increase between zero and 9%, depending on degree, with most rising by 3.6%. The rise in tuition for law, veterinary and MBA degrees also varies, but tops out at 3.6%. Doctoral degree tuition remains unchanged.

Editor's Note: This story was updated after publication to reflect the most recent financial aid figures for fiscal year 2023.

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Rebecca Valli