Cornell Graduate Wages

We provide interactive visualization of what Cornell graduate workers are paid. See what we've found, or help improve our dataset by sending us your own appointment information.

Discipline Filters

Position Filters

Semester Filters

Gender Filters

Race Filters

Cornell's graduate school is almost entirely opaque with regard to its wage policies, including the rate of raises and parity across departments and demographics. We hope to provide insight into those policies by collecting wage data directly from graduate workers and publishing it in aggregate. The full dataset used to create the visualizations above is freely available; you can help us by contributing to it!

The interface above shows the mean wage per bimonthly pay period earned by graduate workers at Cornell. All wages are before taxes, and are taken directly from standardized appointment letters sent to grads by their departments. The interface can be used to compare wages across departments, position types, and some self-reported demographics by applying the appropriate filters. The error bars show standard deviation for a given set of filters. This website was built by Jaron Kent-Dobias, a graduate worker and physics PhD candidate at Cornell who currently makes $1511.50 per pay period.

If you are a graduate worker at Cornell University, you can contribute to this project by emailing your appointment letters to You should receive an appointment letter from your department for every semester you work as a TA, RA, or GRA. These letters can vary from poorly formatted emails to professional-looking email attachments, but contain

  • your department,
  • the year and semester,
  • your salary for the semester,
  • and the number of pay periods covered.
I found all my appointment letters back to Fall 2014 when I arrived at Cornell by searching appointment in my email client, but results may vary by department. If you can't find your letters, your wages (before taxes) should all be recorded in your paystubs, acessible online at Cornell Workday—just make sure you send your department and position along with your salary!

In addition forwarding or attaching these letters in an email to us, we would appreciate if you self-reported your gender and race. Your name and any directly identifying information will not be included in the publicly available data.