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Home > Financial Aid > How do I become an independent student?
How do I become an independent student?
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Independent Status


A student admitted to Cornell as an undergraduate and a dependent student will remain as such for their undergraduate years at Cornell. Even if a student is considered independent for federal student aid, Cornell may consider him or her to be a dependent of their parents when determining institutional aid eligibility.


Cornell will consider a student to be independent if:


  • the student is a non-traditional student and has been self-supporting for more than five years; or
  • both of the student's parents are deceased; or
  • the student is a ward of the court


If any of these situations apply to you, please contact our office to discuss your individual circumstances. You will need to request the application for independent student consideration.

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