University Registration

University registration is the official recognition of a student’s relationship with the university and is the basic authorization for a student’s access to campus resources. Enrollment in courses does not constitute or imply university registration.

To become a registered student at Cornell University a person must,

  • Settle all financial accounts, including current semester tuition
  • Have no registration holds from their college or the Bursar.

Checking Registration Status

To check your registration status, log in to Student Essentials and view your "Registration Status" at the top of the page. Fall registration will be verified on or after August 16. At that time: 

  • If you are registered, your Registration Status will state "Registered" with a green check mark.
  • The absence of a green check mark means there is a hold preventing your registration.


There are several different types of holds - some are positive and note registered status, some are informational and must be completed for graduation, and some are immediate and prevent current semester registration. Your Holds are listed at the top right of the page when logged in to Student Essentials. Click on "more information" for complete details on the hold, including steps to resolve if necessary.

Failure to Register

A hold will be placed on students who fail to become registered. They will not be allowed to participate in enrollment for subsequent semesters and risk being withdrawn from the University at the end of the semester. If a student meets registration requirements, the hold will be lifted and the student will be allowed to participate in enrollment activities for the subsequent semester if their enrollment window has not closed. Once the hold is removed the student will be assessed a late registration fee. If the student fails to meet registration requirements by the end of the semester, the student will be withdrawn from the University and will not be allowed to return for subsequent semesters until they satisfy all registration requirements.

Provisions for Students Receiving Veterans Benefits

In accordance with Title 38 US Code 3679 subsection (e), Cornell adopts the following additional provisions for any students using U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Post 9/11 G.I. Bill® (Ch. 33) or Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment (Ch. 31) benefits, while payment to the institution is pending from the VA.  This school will not:

  • Prevent nor delay the student’s enrollment;
  • Assess a late penalty fee to the student;
  • Require the student to secure alternative or additional funding;
  • Deny the student access to any resources available to other students who have satisfied their tuition and fee bills to the institution, including but not limited to access to classes, libraries, or other institutional facilities.

However, to qualify for this provision, such students may be required to:

  • Produce the Certificate of Eligibility by the first day of class;
  • Provide written request to be certified;
  • Provide additional information needed to properly certify the enrollment as described in other institutional policies.