Cornell University

www.hr.cornell.edu

Cornell University Reviews

Updated January 28, 2015
Updated January 28, 2015
401 Reviews
4.2
401 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Cornell University President David J. Skorton
David J. Skorton
189 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Most department have a really good work / life balance (in 11 reviews)

  • Great benefits including educational and wellness opportunities (in 16 reviews)


Cons
  • Ithaca is cold and is in the middle of nowhere (in 8 reviews)

  • Small town and in which when the school lets out gets even smaller (in 11 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Worst Job Ever

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Programmer/Analyst in Ithaca, NY
    Former Employee - Programmer/Analyst in Ithaca, NY

    I worked at Cornell University full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    If you're a professor, it's a great place to work. Salaries are generous and the administration takes a completely hands-off approach.

    Cons

    Anybody expecting a champagne and brie environment is going to be cruelly disappointing. I witnessed crude behavior by professors, even including fiddling with their crotches at meetings (and not just on 1 or 2 occasions). I over-heard professors verbally abusing graduate students.

    If you're not a professor, the salary and benefits are below average.

    I had to work on more than 90 percent of the weekends while I was at Cornell (including Memorial Day weekend and Labor Day weekend). I had to spend time at the office on the 4th of July, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, and Martin Luther King's birthday.

    Cornell is very much the old boys network. Women are under-represented in the faculty and Afro-Americans are massively under-represented in both the faculty and the student body.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    Perfectly normal summer job at Alumni Affairs

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Student Worker In Alumni Affairs in Ithaca, NY
    Former Employee - Student Worker In Alumni Affairs in Ithaca, NY

    I worked at Cornell University part-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    Friendly coworkers, direct deposit paycheck, office in close proximity to campus, my boss was both helpful in teaching me skills and showing me how to do things but also was very comfortable in putting trust in me and letting me work through things at my own pace/in my own way

    Cons

    Work was relatively boring, there seemed very little opportunity for upward mobility unless you were dedicated to making this your full-time job-- which is discouraging for any students who take the job

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3.  

    Good place for study and do research

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Postdoctoral Research Associate in Ithaca, NY
    Former Employee - Postdoctoral Research Associate in Ithaca, NY

    I worked at Cornell University as a contractor (more than a year)

    Pros

    Cornell University is a good place for study and do research works. They provide relatively good benefits comparing to other similar universities, especially on the visa support etc for the international people.

    Cons

    The location is a little far from big city, so there are very limited chance to find other relative jobs in this colledge town.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
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  5.  

    As a student, extremely easy to find a job, and well-paying

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Student Assistant in Ithaca, NY
    Former Employee - Student Assistant in Ithaca, NY

    I worked at Cornell University part-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    Freedom to set your schedule as needed, pay is great, financial aid students are given jobs in order to help pay for college

    Cons

    Not always the best direct bosses, never saw any of my work come through due to how long it takes the school to approve anything

    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Intellectual environment but limited growth potential and struggling local economy

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Postdoctoral Research Associate in Ithaca, NY
    Current Employee - Postdoctoral Research Associate in Ithaca, NY

    I have been working at Cornell University full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Cornell University is an amazing research university with leading professors, schools and programs, research institutes. The school has been going through a growth trajectory in its facilities and programs as a result of large grants from donors and alumni. Compensation is good for the Ivy Leagues. The campus is gorgeous in late Spring, Summer, and Fall.

    Cons

    One of the largest challenges of working at Cornell's main campus in Ithaca is that it is very removed from the rest of the state and broader intellectual communities in Boston, NYC, and the mid-Atlantic. The university has difficulty bringing in the very best young talent because it takes a large commitment to move to upstate New York and raise a family. That being said, however, the young professors that do settle into the area truly love the slower pace of life and the very small intellectual community.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Integrate the Ithaca campus as much as possible with the NYC intellectual and professional communities.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    The quality of the employer completely depends on the lab or department you're working.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Student Laboratory Assistant in Ithaca, NY
    Former Employee - Student Laboratory Assistant in Ithaca, NY

    I worked at Cornell University part-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    I only worked here as a student, but for student employees the university was great at recognizing the need for students to have flexible hours. I happened to be in a great lab, but other people have had horror stories, though they usually weren't employees but also getting credit. Considering I had many classes with university employees using their tuition remission, I would say that is a great benefit of the university as well.

    Cons

    The quality is variable depending on the lab. It's hard to say something as a whole to the university, because there are so many departments and employees.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    Depends on the Professor

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Teaching Assistant in Ithaca, NY
    Current Employee - Teaching Assistant in Ithaca, NY

    I have been working at Cornell University part-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    Everything at Cornell depends on the professors. Classes can be good or bad, interesting or boring, easy or hard, organized or disorganized, fair or completely random grades, depending on the professor and how the manage the TAs.

    As a TA, I saw differences in grading policies with different professors, and fortunately, they do listen to what the TAs think about it.

    Cons

    Some classes are much too hard. For instance, a Discrete Structures class started teaching extensive amounts of Group Theory, far too high level for computer science majors, even TAs for the class.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    Administrative Assistant at Department of English, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Administrative Assistant in Ithaca, NY
    Former Employee - Administrative Assistant in Ithaca, NY

    I worked at Cornell University part-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    Really great experience, administrative peers and faculty were very friendly and sociable

    Cons

    Compensation for admin assistants is still minimum wage

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great Professional Development and Benefits, Pay at least 20% lower

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Director in Ithaca, NY
    Current Employee - Director in Ithaca, NY

    I have been working at Cornell University full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    great benefits (10% of salary toward 401k by CU
    have a training budget, so you can develop yourself
    having a planning cycle
    get time between Christmas and new years off
    work / life balance is fantastic

    Cons

    pay is lower than other schools by anywhere from 20-30% - not just peer schools, but schools with much lower goals
    in order to move up within the department, you almost have to leave because there is very little movement
    there is no cost of living increase - you are lucky to get 2%/year

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Mechanical Engineering

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Undergraduate Researcher in Ithaca, NY
    Current Employee - Undergraduate Researcher in Ithaca, NY

    I have been working at Cornell University part-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    -Students are taught A LOT of material that definitely puts them at an advantage when entering the field.
    -The facilities are excellent and offer many opportunities for research.
    -The majority of professors are there to help, one just needs to reach out to them.
    -The Cornell community is one of a kind and connections and friendships last a lifetime.
    -The abundance of organizations here offer endless opportunities.

    Cons

    -Sometimes the stress can get to you if you don't balance work and prioritize. Cornell is tough on engineers but for the betterment of the student.

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