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Information Use at Cornell


How Cornell May Use Your Information

Cornell hosts a complex, rich, and evolving research and teaching community. The university's scope of engagements reaches an expansive global community. In support of this community, and while striving to honor the Privacy Shield Principles, information is used to enable Cornell's mission. Select examples of how Cornell may use your information include, but are not limited to, the following:  

  • To consider your application for admission to our colleges, schools and programs
  • To associate you with your Cornell records and engagements, as well as for internal, administrative, and academic support needs
  • To assist you with your travel plans and your stay while attending our programs here at Cornell
  • To provide disability and dietary accommodations for events and programs, as well as linking students with diversity and inclusion opportunities and events on campus
  • To share Cornell-related news, publications, courses, events, programs, and other opportunities tailored to your interests
  • To offer assistance, web or printed materials, services, and support upon your request
  • To provide health and safety services 
  • To facilitate athletic events and participation
  • To perform analytics on the information you provide to help you in decision making (this information is private and not shared with third parties)
  • To participate in research projects
  • To provide access to services offered by Cornell
  • To fundraise
  • To perform general outreach and marketing about Cornell

Types of Information Cornell May Collect About You

Depending on the reason for a person’s engagement with Cornell, the university might collect varied information about that person, based on the requirements of the program, service, or other purpose of the encounter.  The following examples are not collected in every circumstance, and any collection of information is done in accordance with applicable laws. 

  • Contact Information: Name, physical address, country, province, phone number, email address, emergency contact information and family and significant other contact information
  • Cornell Information: Cornell identifiers (e.g., NetID and/or EmployeeID), current grade level, current college if transferring, graduation date, and group and organization memberships
  • Employment Information: Company name, address, phone, fax, email, website, description, parent organization, union membership status, position/title, years in job, responsibilities, position you report to, next step in career path, previous positions, employers and years, resume (file-upload), family and significant other employment information, payroll data, title, years of service, and tax information 
  • Academic Information: High school (HS), HS address, HS GPA, Test Scores: SAT, ACT, GMAT, TOEFL, IELTS, AP/IB scores, summer college and GPA, previous college names, degrees, GPAs, current college, current class (Freshman – Senior), major/concentration, course grades, bursar data, and family and significant other educational background
  • Travel Information: Date/time of arrivals and departures, Flight numbers and airlines, mode of transportation if not flying, accommodations while in Ithaca, and other travel information.
  • Professional Business Analysis Tools: (Very specific information on your business including but not limited to:) business name, address, type, size (sq. ft.), number of employees, titles, positions, wages, cost of running business, restaurant data, data related to employee recruitment or departure.
  • Engagement information: Event attendance, volunteer interests, organization affiliations, committee participation, alumni memberships, awards and honors 
  • Giving information: Information regarding any donation which is made, information that indicates your interest in giving back to Cornell

At Cornell we frequently provide an option to edit or remove yourself from any specialty mailing list and/or service you may have joined that collected personal information about you. If you find a Cornell service which you signed up for and these edit features are not available, please get Support from the IT Help Desk (607) 255-5500 

Select retention of information about individuals may not contain an opt-out option if they are considered to be a critical for life, safety, research, administrative or regulatory compliance needs.

Collection of Cookies and Use of Other Technologies within Cornell websites

Cornell may gather information to track user trends and site usage with the goal of improving our website users' experiences and optimizing our websites. Cornell also uses the information to administer websites and prevent abuse.

Cookies are text files stored on your computer and accessible only to the websites which create them. Cornell websites may use cookies to keep you logged into secure areas of the website and/or to keep track of your preferences as you interact with certain services. You may disable cookies in your browser; however, Cornell websites may not work as designed if you do so.

Cornell may automatically collect certain data in conjunction with third party tools to gather metrics on site usage including geographic location of visitors, pathways navigated through the website, and which portion of our audience is internal to the Cornell network. The information Cornell collects in this manner does not identify you as an individual

Cornell may use technical methods to determine if individuals have viewed emails Cornell sends. This information is often used to make Cornell websites, and emails you have agreed to receive, more interesting to you.

As outlined above, non-personally identifiable web information (cookies, site navigation, etc.) gathered may also be shared with third parties to improve programs, outreach, and other campus initiatives. Additionally, aggregated metrics may be shared with vendors to improve communications related to these activities.

Use of External Data Processors

The vast majority of data processing required by Cornell to meet its mission is performed by external data processors. External data processors are bound to Cornell’s processing principles via Privacy Shield membership and/or standard contractual clauses. For more information about unique operating unit collection of Personally Identifiable Information (PII) and data processor use, please contact us.

GDPR Rights Requests 

Special Note to the Cornell Community:

GDPR rights requests are centrally managed through Cornell University CIT. This is to ensure consistency, transparency, and accountability in our university response.

Note to our European Constituents:

If you are located within the European Economic Area (“EEA,” European Union member states, Norway, Liechtenstein, and Iceland), we acknowledge the rights granted to you under the GDPR.

These rights may include:

  1. Right to access your information held by us
  2. Right to correct inaccurate or incorrect information about you
  3. Right to the erasure of your information when it is no longer necessary for us to retain it
  4. Right to restrict processing of your personal information in specific situations
  5. Right to object to processing your information, including sending you communications that may be considered direct-marketing materials
  6. Right to object to automated decision-making and profiling, where applicable
  7. Right to complain to a supervisory authority in your EEA jurisdiction

If you wish to exercise your rights or have other questions or concerns related to your rights under the GDPR, contact the IT Help Desk or call (607) 255-5500