Student Life & Housing

Student Life and Housing

We are excited that you are considering the Tri-Institutional Computational Biology and Medicine (CBM) Program for your PhD training!


As you know, CBM students are located at four different institutions (Cornell, Weill Cornell, MSKCC, and Rockefeller) and in two different locations (NYC and Ithaca). Despite the distance and difference in lab affiliations, CBM students remain a cohesive group who frequently come together for journal clubs, seminars, research in progress talks, and for social hour at the various student and faculty clubs on the Tri-I campuses. Furthermore, all students attend the student retreat held each summer. It is a wonderful way to welcome new students and a great way to catch up on everyone’s research. There is also friendly competition on “trivia night” and on the basketball court. Find out more information about our previous retreats.

CBM has always welcomed and encouraged student input for its programs and policies. Throughout the years, CBM students have volunteered their time helping with various academic and social events. Following discussions at the Annual CBM Retreat in 2014, it was agreed that a CBM Student Council would be formed with specific committees on the NYC and Ithaca campuses. Students on the council serve as communications officers, coordinators for research in progress seminars and journal clubs, represent CBM on NYC and Ithaca graduate student organizations, and serve as coordinators for social events at the two locations. The Council members help keep students’ concerns and interests a priority, and meet on a bi-monthly basis along with program co-directors and CBM administration to discuss topics of interest to the CBM students.

Whether you join a lab in Ithaca or NYC, we believe that you will make life-long friendships and find supportive colleagues in the program. We hope that you consider joining us!

New York City

The New York City CBM campuses (Weill Cornell Medicine, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, and Rockefeller University) are located on the Tri-Institutional corner at 68th Street and York Avenue and they are adjacent to the campus of The Rockefeller University, Together, these institutions form a tight-knit hub of biomedical research. Even in this bustling city, we are in our own small oasis, meeting with fellow students at the various student and faculty clubs or studying together at one of the many lounges on the Tri-I campuses. The physical proximity is mirrored by an incredible collaborative spirit among the institutions, with an abundance of events and lectures from field-leading experts offered daily that are open to members of all campuses. We also maintain close ties with the vast number of other research and scientific centers throughout NYC, further expanding the opportunities available to students.

Living in Manhattan on New York City’s Upper East Side is an experience like no other. This area is a perfect mixture of the hustle and bustle of the city and a quieter living environment. Central Park is only a 10-minute walk from campus and the neighborhood is surrounded by an eclectic selection of restaurants, bars, and stores. Through the graduate school events office, students are regularly offered discounted tickets to popular Broadway shows, operas, concerts, museums, movies and other recreational activities. Additionally, public transportation in New York City is arguably the best in the world so travelling to other parts of the city is incredibly convenient.

In order to ease the financial burden of living in Manhattan, housing for all CBM students is provided at a significantly subsidized rate. CBM students live in Weill Cornell, Sloan Kettering or Rockefeller housing.  Location of students’ housing is generally decided on the basis of which campus student selects for their thesis studies.  The standard setup is a 2 or 3-bedroom apartment, with a kitchen, dining area, and bathroom. In some instances, family housing and studio apartments are also available upon request. CBM students have access to gym facilities, recreational areas (such as a roof-top squash court), lounges, and even an outdoor terrace.

Ithaca, NY

Cornell University’s main campus provides a traditional collegiate setting with a rich community of graduate students. The graduate and professional student center, called the Big Red Barn, constantly holds events that facilitate social and intellectual interactions with members of all programs. These include weekly happy hours, international conversation hour, trivia nights, thesis writing communities, and more.

Ithaca is a beautiful city located in Upstate New York. Proudly bearing the motto “Ithaca is Gorges”, the town is surrounded by more than 150 waterfalls, each with its own gorge. The astounding nature is supplemented by the free spirit and the unique culture of the local community. Downtown Ithaca features small boutiques, casual and fine dining, natural food stores and farmers market, as well as a number of theaters, bars and venues for concerts and exhibits.

Ithaca is a vibrant college town environment. Housing is affordable and one can get a nice, spacious one-bedroom apartment for a very reasonable cost. Public transportation makes it easy to get around and live comfortably without having a car. Cornell students can ride all buses for free after 6pm during the week or any time during the weekend, and first year students can ride all buses for free anytime. The university’s campus features beautiful architecture and views of the area, a unique movie theater, regular chime shows, numerous student groups and activities, and a concert hall featuring both local and international performers.