The Cornell Ann S. Bowers College of Computing and Information Science celebrated the newest cohort of students to declare a major within the college, providing dinner, swag, and introductions to the various clubs, services, and resources now available to them.
More than 160 new majors attended the event, held Oct. 4 in the Statler Hotel Ballroom. About two dozen faculty members, along with student leaders and various support staff from the college's three departments – computer science, information science, and statistics and data science – joined in the celebration.
“The event was a great introduction and welcome to Bowers CIS," said Chris Walkowiak '26, a brand new information science major. "The event really highlighted the college’s commitment to its students and provided great opportunities to meet fellow students and talk with faculty in a more informal setting."
In her opening remarks, Kavita Bala, dean of the college, welcomed the students to their new "intellectual home" within the college.
Undergraduates gain admission to Cornell through one of three admitting colleges: Cornell Engineering, the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, or the College of Arts and Sciences. But if their academic path leads them to biometry and statistics, information science, computer science, statistical science, or information science, systems, and technology, they become affiliated with Cornell Bowers CIS.
"I tell my students that this is the best time to be in these disciplines," she said. "When you get your degree and go out there, you will be able to have an incredible and lasting real world impact."
Students also heard from leaders from many of the campus organizations affiliated with the college, including Women in Computing at Cornell, Association of Computer Science Undergraduates, Underrepresented Minorities in Computing, and the Information Science Student Association. Additionally, representatives from the college’s Office of Student Services and Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion introduced themselves.
The new majors join a growing body of students interested in the technologies driving the information age. In 2022, more than 2,000 undergraduates obtained a degree offered by the college, representing a sixfold growth in enrollment over the previous ten years.
"I chose Cornell because of Bowers, actually – the information science program here is unique and unlike anything most schools offer," Walkowiak said. "I’d always been interested in technology but more so the intersections between technology and other aspects of society, and IS speaks to that in a way not fully addressed by more theoretical majors."