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About NetIDs

The NetID is the electronic identifier issued to members of the Cornell community—students, faculty, staff, alumni, affiliates. It is a string of alphanumeric characters based on the individual’s name followed by a number. NetIDs are unique and permanent. 

The same NetID is never reassigned to more than one individual; if you leave the University and return at a later time, the original NetID is reactivated for your use.

In combination with the password the NetID enables access to non-public resources and information. For example, every student must log in with their NetID and password to access grades and other information in Student Center. It also serves as the unique portion of a Cornell email address in the form

Sponsored NetIDs are intended for use with contractors or other individuals who are not directly affiliated with Cornell but have a business purpose for needing access to Cornell services or systems. See the How to page for detailed instructions.

A NetID is issued at the discretion of the Hotel School to graduates of its professional development programs, known as "associates" in the Identity Management system. NetIDs are issued twice a year after the conclusion of the January and summer program.

Other ID Types

Other types of ID are also in use at Cornell:

  • GuestID, which allows users who are not eligible for a NetID to access certain services.
  • ApplicantID, which is assigned to Cornell applicants.
  • WCMC CWID, the ID for Weill Cornell Medical College.

In addition, visitors from institutions that participate in eduroam can sign in to Cornell campus eduroam secure Wi-Fi using their home institution login and password.


NetIDs were first introduced at Cornell in the early 1990s and from that time forward all new members of the community have been issued a NetID soon after they establish a relationship with the University. 

Since the mid-1990s, NetIDs have been available upon demand to alumni who attended Cornell prior to the 1990s. 

The number of services which use the NetID and password to enable secure access has grown significantly over the years, reducing the number of user IDs and passwords Cornell users have to remember. This approach also eliminates the need for each service provider to create and maintain user accounts.