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Cornell University

Faculty Involvement FAQ

What is the idea behind faculty living in and being connected to the residence halls?


By connecting interested faculty members with residential communities, you have the opportunity to develop meaningful connections with faculty outside of the formal spaces (classroom, lab, and office hours), engage in learning outside of the classroom, and deepen your intellectual experience at Cornell. Some faculty members actually live in some of the residential buildings (Faculty-in-Residence) and others spend time interacting with residents of a particular residential community.

What is a Faculty-in-Residence?


A Faculty-in-Residence is a Cornell faculty member who was selected to live in one of the first-year residences with their family. They have chosen to do this because they are interested in and committed to creating the most intellectually rich and welcoming first-year experience for first-year students. You will see them everywhere - around the buildings, in the dining room, and at events in their apartments.

What is a Faculty Fellow?

A Faculty Fellow is a Cornell faculty member who has volunteered to engage with undergraduates in a particular residential community. Their primary responsibility is to provide students in their residential community with opportunities to explore and cultivate their academic, intellectual, and cultural interests. You will find them attending events in your building, eating with students in the dining room, and leading on and off campus trips to lectures, plays, films, concerts, and regional pints of interest.

Why should you spend time with faculty in your residential community?

  • They can point you in the right direction when you need a question answered, a problem addressed, or are just wondering about something.
  • They know a lot about Cornell and Ithaca, and are interested in helping you get the most out of your experience.
  • They are fascinating people who have done amazing things. And they want to share that with you!
  • They can help you gain the confidence to get to know your professors and be able to ask for references or letters of recommendation.

How can you get involved with the faculty in your residential community?

That’s easy. Keep your eyes and ears open for announcements about events that will come from your RA, Residence Hall Director, Faculty-in-Residence, or appear on bulletin boards around your building. Check in with your RAs, ask them what’s going on, and let them know you are interested in getting connected with the faculty in your residential community.