The Keyword Bar XII

8 07 2011

One of those entries where I respond to questions or queries in the search bar that brought people to this blog. Plus it’s summer and I don’t feel like delving into history today.

For the curious – the sculpture in front of Uris is called “Song of the Vowels”. The sculptor, Jacques Lipchitz, created seven copies back in 1931. Cornell’s was the fifth production, and the sculpture was acquired in 1962 by the Uris brothers on behalf of Cornell, and installed in June of that year. Princeton, UCLA, Stanford, the Kykuit Gardens and two European art museums own the other copies. “Song of the Vowels” was renovated and re-sited in 2007.

1. “why does cornell cals accept so many transfer students” (7-6-2011)

That’s actually a good question. This one kinda creates some tension in the CALS community, and certainly that animosity is not unfounded. In the past, I’ve heard people criticize transfers as not being “true Cornellians”, whatever they define that to be.

As a general rule, the contract colleges accept more transfer students than the endowed colleges. It’s actually part of the mission of the contract colleges to include transfer students into their programs, if the applicants meet standards. However, this does not hold true for endowed schools, and that is reflected in the fewer students that they accept as transfers.

Specifically regarding the ag school, CALS accepts more because of “transfer agreements” that serve as feeders into CALS programs. A number of SUNY-affiliated two-year schools fall into this category. Basically, a student studying full time with a 3.0 or higher in their coursework (including required classes that match up with their desired major at Cornell) are guaranteed admission. This tends to be most common in the agricultural programs – for example, a majority of students in the dairy science concentration of animal science are transfers from two-year schools such as SUNY Cobleskill and Alfred State. A few others, like Morrisville and Delhi, also send in a fair number of students. As the list in the link indicates, there’s 43 schools, mostly community colleges in New York, that have these agreements. Some of it is coordinated through programs such as “Pathways to Success”, a set of guidelines and counseling in place at some schools for students who want to transfer to Cornell. For the name-conscious AEM majors, it should be noted that biology, landscape architecture, and non-agribusiness AEM are exempt from this and fall under “competitive transfer” admissions. Also, if you don’t attend a partnered institution, then the transfer isn’t guaranteed either.

In my own major within CALS, I know that we had two transfers in the years from 2007-2011 (~3% of total). But in lean years where the yield from freshman admissions wasn’t so great, they were supplanted the following year with transfers. I think there’s at least eight in the 2012 and 2013 classes (~50% of total).

2. “cornell freshman population” (7-4-2011)

Varies a little bit from year to year due to yield. The goal number in the late 2000s was 3,050. The university usually over-enrolls (my guess is twofold –  it’s to make up for students who may not show up in the fall, and a few more accepting students makes the yield increase), so class size usually ends up somewhere in the 3100s. The trend over the years has been to increase freshman class size, which was about 2700 in the late 1980s.

3. “cornell safety school” (7-4-2011)

Meh. Do your graduate work at a large state school and you’ll realize how little weight that statement carries. The New York Times has a nice little piece about image-conscious students at Cornell from a few years back.

4. “how far is it from wegmans to maplewood apartments at cornell in ithaca” (7-1-2011)

I think Mapquest would’ve been more useful than a search bar for this question. But for the record, between 2.5 and 2.7 miles, depending on what part of the Maplewood Park Apt. complex you’re going to.

5. “construction project; bj’s ithaca; owner” (7-1-2011)

The project is being developed by Arrowhead Ventures of Syracuse, which is a division of Triax Development Coroporation. Triax is the company that owns the Ithaca Mall, and the BJ’s site is (rather conveniently) the property just northwest of the mall.


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