Back to top

Overview and Introduction

The Biological and Environmental Engineering Graduate Student Handbook is prepared to assist both new and continuing graduate students, not only with their studies, but also with policies and procedures of the Department of Biological and Environmental Engineering (BEE) as well as general policies of the Graduate School at Cornell University.

These guidelines should be used as a guide to the specific activities within the Field of Biological and Environmental Engineering and the Department of Biological and Environmental Engineering.  Additional valuable information is available in the Guide to Graduate Study sent to all new graduate students and available at the Graduate School in Caldwell Hall or on-line at:  The Cornell University Courses of Study catalog is also a useful tool and is available through the Graduate School or on-line at:

Overall administrative responsibility for the Biological and Environmental Engineering Graduate Field rests with the Graduate Coordinating Committee chaired by Professor Peter Hess.

Questions for this committee should be directed to Professor Hess, Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) for the Field.  Questions about the graduate program should be directed to either Professor Hess, or to Brenda Marchewka, Graduate Field Assistant (GFA), 207 Riley-Robb Hall.

For purposes of administration, the Director of Graduate Studies automatically becomes your Committee Chairperson if you do not submit this change in Student Center within the first three weeks of your first semester of graduate study.  The remainder of your Special Committee should be in place by the end of your second semester of study for MS and third semester of study for PhD.  MS and MPS require a committee of two graduate faculty.  PhD requires a committee of three graduate faculty.  MEng requires a project supervisor who is a graduate faculty member in BEE.

Please become familiar with the information available to you concerning graduation requirements.  The Graduate School places the responsibility on YOU to know and meet all requirements.