Cornell University

Overview for Employers

If you are either a non-profit or small for-profit employer and you have a full-time summer position to offer a Federal Work-Study (FWS) eligible Cornell undergraduate student, the DYO Program at Cornell may be able to significantly reimburse you for the student's summer wages. This program can be a great hiring incentive for paid internships/jobs as well as stipend-based, or unpaid internships.

Identify a Student

Identify a Cornell student directly or through an internship posting you create in our Cornell Handshake system. If you can only hire a student who qualifies for the DYO reimbursement, include a statement in the internship description that Federal Work-Study eligibility is required.

We recommend that you post the internship early, as Cornell students are motivated to settle their summer plans well before leaving campus in May. Many students participate in internship interviews by phone, or in-person during Winter break in January or Spring break in March.

Job or Internship Requirements 

  • Internship/job must be career-related or academically relevant.
  • The job must be located in the United States.
  • Employment must be for at least 35 hours per week.
  • If your internship is "virtual," you must have regular supervision via phone, Skype, or in-person meetings.
  • Employers must pay an hourly wage equal to or greater than local, state, or federal minimum wage (whichever is higher). Stipend- or commission-based salaries will not be reimbursed.
  • Position must last at least 8—10 weeks.
  • Employer must pay the student's wages up front through their payroll system and then Cornell will provide reimbursement for the approved percentage in the fall term.


Due to Federal or Cornell regulations, we cannot consider jobs or employers:

  • with a direct religious or partisan political affiliation
  • for students to work in their family-owned business
  • with a lobbying organization (or lobbying function within an organization)
  • with an employer that restricts its membership
  • with the U.S. Department of Education or U.S. Department of Justice
  • that offer stipend or commission-based salaries, or are unpaid/volunteer
  • with a medium to large for-profit with multiple worksites
  • that do not have a regular supervisory/intern interaction
  • located in a foreign country
  • with an employer that is student-led or run by a student or recent graduate (supervisor must be a seasoned professional)
  • no reimbursement will be made for lunchtime, holidays, sick days, transportation, or other compensation


 Cornell University will be carefully reviewing all applications and internship descriptions to determine reimbursement eligibility percentage.

  • For-profits receive 50%
  • Non-profits receive 50%-75%*

*Non-profit organizations can receive a 50% reimbursement, or a 75% reimbursement (if the internships is considered by Cornell University as a community service opportunity).

Community Service

Community services are defined as those services that are identified by an institution of higher education through formal or informal consultation with local nonprofit, governmental, and community-based organizations, designed to improve the quality of life for community residents, particularly low-income individuals, or to solve particular problems related to their needs.

These services include:

  • fields such as health care, child care, literacy training, education (including tutorial services), welfare, social services, transportation, housing and neighborhood improvement, public safety, crime prevention and control, recreation, rural  development, and community improvement.
  • work in youth corps service opportunities or as defined in Section 101 of the National and Community Service Act of 1990, and service in the agencies, institutions, and activities designated in Section 124(a) of that act.
  • support services for students with disabilities (including students with disabilities who are enrolled at the university).
  • activities in which a FWS student serves as a mentor for such purposes as tutoring, supporting educational and recreational activities, and counseling, including career counseling.

Reimbursement Requirements

As a participant of the Cornell DYO program, an employer should understand the following important requirements. Failure to comply with the following could jeopardize your reimbursement.

  • Positions must be paid hourly on the employer’s payroll throughout the employment period. Stipend, commission, lump sum or personal check payments are NOT reimbursable. State, Federal, and FICA withholding are expected.
  • Funding is approved for the specific student, and may not be transferred to a different individual.
  • A separate application is required for each student annually, regardless of previous participation. This requirement also applies to Boyce Thompson and Weill Cornell.
  • Hours worked prior to notification of funding approval are not eligible for reimbursement.

Both employers and students must submit the required forms and materials to be considered for the program.  To apply, click on Forms link to the right.

Questions? Email