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Cornell University

Hiring Guidelines, Policies, and Timelines

For students: We also expect our students to respond to your job offers according to the expectations that can be found in the Student Rights and Responsibilities for Cornell Students

Whether recruiting our students on campus or at their own locations—our employers are expected to abide by Cornell Career Services' Employer Offer Guidelines and Recruiting Policies. 

Review the Experience Agreement section of our website for information on internship contracts or other experiential learning agreements.

Employer Policies & Offer Guidelines 

Updated April 22, 2024

Cornell Career Services (CCS) is pleased that you are interested in hiring Cornell students. We have developed the following procedures and guidelines for candidate identification, interviews (first- and second-rounds), employment offers, and other aspects of the recruiting process. A shared commitment to these policies and guidelines—by both recruiting partners and the University— is the foundation for a successful recruiting experience for students and employers alike. We also expect employers to comply with Principles for Ethical Professional Practice established by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE).

We strive to facilitate a fair and ethical recruiting process. Employers that fail to heed these policies or make offers inconsistent with our guidelines may damage  their brand on campus, and/or experience difficulty securing commitments from our talented students.  

If you have questions about these policies, please contact CCS (Erica Kryst, Executive Director, at 607/255-2723 or; Kimberlee Swartz, Associate Director, at 607/255-7464 or, or your representative in the appropriate college office. 

Job-Offer Response Dates and Offer Guidelines: 

On-Campus Recruiting and Job Postings 

As noted in the NACE Advisory Opinion on reasonable job-offer deadlines, “Experience shows the best employment decisions for both students and employers are those that are made without pressure and with the greatest amount of information and transparency. Students given sufficient time to attend career fairs, participate in on-campus interviews, and/or complete the interviewing in which they are currently engaged are more likely to make good long-term employment decisions and may be less likely to renege on job acceptances.” Cornell’s guidelines for job-offer response dates are as follows. 

Full-Time Offers for 2025 Start Dates 

Written Offer Extended Earliest Response Date 
On or before 8/30/24 10/2/24 
Between 9/2/24 and 11/1/24 11/1/24 or 2 weeks, whichever is later
On or after 11/4/242 weeks

Offers for Summer 2025 and 2026 Internships (Extended in 2024-25 AY)

Written Offer Extended Earliest Response Date 
On or before 8/30/2410/16/24
Between 9/2/24 and 11/1/24 11/1/24 or 2 weeks, whichever is later 
On or after 11/4/242 weeks

In some cases, students may ask for extensions beyond these dates; we hope you can accommodate them. Most employers have been very understanding and willing to give students the time they need. We appreciate your cooperation and flexibility. 

Job-Offer Communications 

We expect employers to maintain clear communication with prospective student candidates regarding recruiting timelines, second or final round interviews, offer decisions, and deadlines to respond (in accordance with our policies). 

Once an offer has been made, allow the student the recommended time frame to make a decision without additional pressure. Please note, often what is intended to serve as helpful points of contact—such as outreach to candidates by multiple current employees—adds excessive pressure during a student’s process of considering an offer. 

Employers should communicate their offer procedures clearly to students, including method for students to confirm acceptance (e.g., signing written documentation, confirming an electronic offer, etc.), and whether the employer considers a verbal statement acceptance to be a binding job acceptance.  Offers should include start dates and basis of compensation. 

Rescinded Offers 

If circumstances force an employer to rescind offers, the employer must report this to Cornell Career Services staff prior to rescinding the offer from the student. This will allow us to provide support to that student with their job or internship search. We review rescinded offers on a case-by-case basis, with consequences for employers ranging from delayed registration for on-campus interview dates, reduced campus access for an academic year or longer, or other appropriate actions. 

Campus Engagement 

Cornell Career Services strives to assist employers in developing a recruiting strategy that is equitable, open, and inclusive. Our expectation is that scheduling of all recruiting activity, including events with target groups, will originate with our offices. The date and time of all recruiting activity at Cornell requires pre-approval from Career Services. Please reach out to CCS at or your representative in the appropriate college office.  

Activities may include, but are not limited to:  interviews, information sessions, coffee chats, office hours, networking events, competitions, practice interviews, and resume critiques.

Employers should consult with the career office coordinating their planned activities for guidance on collaborations with student organizations or departments. All other activities should be communicated to career services.

We will make every effort to schedule your activities at a time that will maximize your “brand exposure” and avoid head-to-head conflicts with your competitors. We also recommend times that are convenient for students at times that will facilitate your success, primarily during the 4:30-7:30 p.m. student activity period. We will work with you to schedule these events in approved, on-campus facilities. 

In support of the University’s educational mission, CCS reserves the right to prohibit scheduling of events during final exams, and may limit activities that occur during class times, or for an extended class period. We will consult with you regarding the number of events you hold each semester. We strongly encourage firm-wide events that are open to all students. Employer activity on campus will not be approved during the following: 

Fall 2024 No On-Campus Interviews or Other Events Scheduled (All Offices):

Rosh Hashanah (begins sundown on October 2) 
Evening of Wednesday, October 2 - Evening of Sunday, October 4 

Yom Kippur (begins sundown on October 11) 
Evening of Friday, October 11 - Evening of Saturday, October 12

Fall Break 
Saturday, October 12 - Wednesday, October 16

Thanksgiving Break 
Wednesday, November 27 - Monday, December 2 

Study Period 
Tuesday, December 10 - Thursday, December 12

Scheduled Exams 
Friday, December 13 - Saturday, December 21 

Career Fairs: See the list of fairs

Spring 2025 No On-Campus Interviews or Other Events Scheduled (All Offices):

February Break 
Saturday, February 15 - Wednesday, February 19 

Spring Break 
Saturday, March 29 - Monday, April 7 

Scheduled Exams 
Saturday, May 10 - Saturday, May 17

Career Fairs: See the list of fairs

Second Round Interviews, Site Visits, and Recruiting Timelines 

In accordance with CCS recruiting policies, students may not cancel first-round interviews to attend second-round interviews. Those who do, face suspension of their campus recruiting privileges. In order to support this, we expect our employer partners to adhere to the following: 

  • Please offer students alternate times for second-round interviews to avoid missing class or canceling first-round interviews (which is prohibited). Most professors will not excuse students from class or exams for recruiting-related activities. 
  • Schedule “Super Day” events in accordance with the recruiting calendar and provide students sufficient time to make academic arrangements. We ask that you be flexible with your dates since students are not allowed to cancel first-round interviews to attend these events and may experience academic consequences if they miss exams or classes. 
  • Communicate recruiting timelines and procedures to students, including advance notice of when and where second- round interviews will take place. In all cases, offer students alternative dates, without negative consequence, for a second-round interview if the original date interferes with a student’s first-round interview, exam, or other valid conflict. 

Employers should not extend invitations that conflict with this policy. Students should not request that employers offer second-round interviews that conflict with this policy, even if a date is convenient for both parties. To do so is considered a violation of these policies. 

Accelerated Recruiting Timeline 

Early-identification and recruiting processes require students to make career decisions before they have the opportunity to explore a variety of employers or career paths. This interferes with our institutions goal of supporting our students’ academic and developmental needs.  We discourage processes that require excessively early commitment and recognize that this practice often leads to students reneging. Please note the offer timelines above relevant to early recruiting.

Professional Conduct 

Employers can build a positive brand as an “employer of choice” by handling the entire recruiting process with a high level of integrity. Any employer recruiting Cornell students, either through virtual activities or on our campus, should communicate desired professional behavior to all team members representing their organization. Recent alumni may need guidance on how best to represent their organization, in formal and informal situations. It is not acceptable for employer representatives to share information on personal relationships, alcohol consumption, candidacy of other applicants, etc. To facilitate a professional recruiting environment alcohol should not be provided for students during any on- or off- campus company activity involving our undergraduates. 

Recruiting and Other Career Office Contacts 

Cornell Career Services at Barnes Hall, 103 and 210 Barnes -, 607-255-6934 

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS), 140 Roberts -, 607-255-2257 

College of Engineering (ENG), 201 Carpenter -, 607-255-5006 

SCJ College of Business – Dyson, B63 Warren / Hotel, 180 Statler -, 607-255-6376 

ILR School (ILR), 201 Ives -, 607-255-2724 

College of Architecture, Art, and Planning (AAP), B1 West Sibley -, 607-255-6544 

College of Arts and Sciences (A&S), 172 Goldwin Smith -, 607-255-4166 

College of Human Ecology, 1203 MVR -, 607-255-2532 

Brooks School of Public Policy -